The Issues Of Police Brutality And Wrongful Sentencing In The US Criminal Justice System
What is the Criminal Justice system? “The Criminal Justice system is a set of agencies established by the government to control crime and impose penalties on those who violate the laws”. The Criminal Justice system has been facing a significant amount of issues as a whole. Certain areas in the CJ system have their own issues that they been facing and still facing today. Some areas are the court system, the death penalty, and crime itself. In the Criminal Justice system police brutality has become a major issue in the past couple of years. Police brutality is the use of an unneeded violence when arresting a civilian. Most police brutality cases deal with an African American citizen and a Caucasian police officer.
One of the cases that made a huge impact on society is the shooting of Michael Brown. Michael Brown was an African American male who was shot and killed by a Caucasian police officer. The police officer thought Michael could be a suspect for a robbery at a store. The police officer decided to shoot Michael from his car because he believed Michael was trying to grab his gun. Michael tried to run but the officer shot him a couple of more times. The police officer didn’t go to prison for killing Michael Brown. This case made citizens want to protest for “Black Lives Matter. ” Police officers are rarely prosecuted for shootings. Police officers are obligated to make civilians feel safe. This impacts society because they feel like the police are out to get them for no reason. Some people actually fear for their lives when a police officer stops them. Most people are even scared to talk to the police because they feel like the police will cause a problem with them and shoot them.
Police Brutality is ongoing issue that needs to be stop. When a person commits a crime and is arrested, the courts decide whether the person is guilty or not. If they are guilty, the court discuss what the consequence would be for that person. They can give someone an unfair sentence for a crime. Sometimes the courts can convict a person who is completely innocent. For example, a man named Andre Davis was convicted of a rape in the late 1900s and was sentenced to 31 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. The Central Park five victims were also wrongfully sentenced for a rape they did not commit before getting justice. When innocent people are wrongfully convicted, it takes a toll on their life. It can have long-term effects on a person that has been wrongfully convicted. These long-term effects include aggression and depression. This impacts society because some people who are wrongfully convicted feel like they would never get their freedom back even when they are released. Wrongful convictions also impact society because arresting an innocent person means the real suspect is still walking free.
Gangs has always been around since the 1900s. Today gangs have become more of a problem. More youths are joining gangs and many murders that are committed are gang related. “Youth gangs are becoming more violent and increasingly serve as a way for members to engage in illegal money-making activities, such as drug and firearms trafficking. ” Most gangs have altercations with other gangs such as the bloods and the crips. When gangs have an altercation with another gang, it usually ends with someone dead or injured. This impact society because most of the time an innocent bystander would get killed or injured when there are gang shootings. It is hard to explain to someone’s parent that their child was killed due to gang violence knowing that their child had nothing to do with this act of violence. The death penalty is a cruel and unusual punishment. It is considered the method of execution. Some states believe in the death penalty while others don’t. People are executed by certain states as punishment for different crimes a person has committed. One issue that has been occurring more often is innocent people getting the death penalty. For example, David Keaton was an innocent man who was accused of murdering a sheriff and was sentenced to death. He was then mistaken for someone else. “At least 4. 1% of all defendants sentenced to death in the US in the modern era are innocent. ” Several people have been wrongfully executed. One person who has been wrongfully executed is Timothy Evans. He was executed for murdering his daughter. Police later discovered that another man, who rented a room from Timothy was a serial killer and was responsible for the murder of his daughter. This can impact society because innocent people are losing their lives to something they haven’t done. Families are losing their loved ones for no reason at all. The death penalty is something we should no longer use in our society. There are many other issues in the Cj system that we are facing in the world today.
The topics I decided to mention are ones that are more common and happening frequently. We need to decrease these types of crimes from happening. For example, police should have better training for approaching a civilian. If the suspect is not armed, there should be no use of deadly force. We could stop wrongful sentencing and giving innocent people the death penalty by making sure there is a significant amount of evidence that ties the suspect to the crime. To get gangs off the street, we could provide them with activities in their community. We as citizens should help these types of crimes from happening often. We need to be more involved on how safe we want our communities to be.