Crime and punishment

  • Created by: JodieB01
  • Created on: 03-01-17 14:36

Religious attitudes towards crime...

Christians teach that criminals need to be punished but also forgiven and given a second chance. They believe that it is important to work towaards stopping the causes of crime. Christians are encouraged to be law-abiding citizens. 

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Causes of crime


  • being excluded from school, meaning a lack of education
  • being left with nothing constructive to do
  • no money
  • a feeling of importance
  • adrenalin rush


  • rivalry between gangs
  • inadequate housing
  • an un-cared for environment doesn't encourage responsible behaviour


  • human nature is naturally selfish
  • violence on TV can influence people to try copy it.
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Types of crime


NON-INDICTABLE crimes are less serius offences, such as drinving over the speed limit. Offenders aren't sent to prison for these sorts of crimes. 

INDICTABLE crimes are more serious, such as **** and murder. In these cases offenders may face a prison sentence.

Three categories of crime: crime against the person, crime against property and crime against the state. 

Crime against the person - wrongdoing that directly affects a person eg. murder, assult.

Crime against property - damaging things that belong to someone else

Crime against the state - an offence aimed at damaging the goverment or a country. 

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Aims of punishment

The main aims of punishment are:

  • Protection
  • Retribution
  • Detterance
  • Reformation
  • Vindication
  • Reparation


Keeping the public from being harmed, threatened or injured by criminals


Seen as 'getting even' with the person who has commited the crime. It is getting revenge and giving the criminal what they deserve. This may help the victim to overcome their resentment.

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Punishment aims


Some potential criminals may be put off commiting a crime if they believe that they will be caught and dealt with seriously; so it is to put people off commiting crime.


Reformation means turning criminals into law abiding citizens. It involves recognition that offenders need help to change their ways. 


Offenders must be punished to show that the law must be respected and is right.


Restorative justice is that an offender is asked to do something to make up for the crime they have commited. 

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Religious attitudes towards the aims of punishment


  • Most christians wouldn't support the idea of retribution
  • christians believe laws need to be upheld
  • they also believe in crime prevention
  • offenders should repent of their wrong doing and recieve both punishment and forgiveness
  • once a penalty is paid, they have a second chance and can start fresh.


  • Muslim's believe that offenders will repent, reform and seek forgiveness from Allah and their victims.
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  • protect society from dangerous criminals
  • isolate those who deserve punishment
  • stop people reoffending
  • act as a detterant to others
  • give offenders a chance to reflect on their actions. 


  • 'schools for crime' - prisoners can educate eachother in criminal methods
  • most prisoners reoffend on release
  • a prison record makes it very hard to find a job - may lead back to crime
  • offenders families suffer through no fault of their own
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