The Project File Details
Definition of Concepts
Recent studies on crime reveal that there is a steady increase in crime rate the world over. It is believed that the reason for this ugly trend ranges from the inordinate ambition of some politicians fragrant display of power passion for material acquisition, exploitation of the masses by those in powerful positions, poverty, inter-Ethnic rivalry, economic depression, high unemployment rate, marginalization among others.
Several attempts have been made by the Federal Government to improve the relationship between Police and members of the Public. Many programmes has been organized to improve on this relationship and this includes the formation of the Police Community Relations Committee in 1988 by the then Inspector General of Police Etim Inyang. This was in a bid to elicit compliance of members of the committee to assist the police in crime detection and control.
In an ideal society, the police or elites at all ought to be servants of the people. If this is the case, there would be no antagonism and hostility between the Police or Elites officers and the communities they serve in a bid to combat crime. However, the literature on Police Community Relations and crime control reveals that the Police are often in conflict with a significant percentage of the population in almost all the countries of the world. (Alemika and Chukwuma 2000).
This is so because modern societies are diverse in economic, social and cultural composition, which the Police and Elites officers may not be neutral in respect to competing and sometimes antagonistic class relations no matter how hard they try.
Secondly, Police are agents of state employed to maintain social order in the interest of the rulers and the dominant economic class are paramount. Therefore, police enforcement of the laws which promotes the interest of the rulers to the detriment of the majority of the population, invariably put them in hostile relations with their host communities across countries (Alemika, 1999).
Therefore, since the nature of Police and Elites officers work is providing security service to the communities, it is necessary their relationship is made cordial, rather than antagonistic to each other. Research has shown that the Police Community partnership is not simply an exercise in public relations rather is an important tool for the Police to employ in order to perform their duties successfully.
DEFINITIONS OF CONCEPTS
It is difficult to present a universal definition of crime. This is because an act may be a crime in one society but not so regarded as crime in another society. Likewise, an act defined as a crime at one time may not be so defined as crime in another time. In some cases, even if similar acts are defined as crime in different societies, the gravity or seriousness to which each society views the acts may be different.
In a strict legal definition, however, a crime is a violation of the criminal law, which is subsequently followed by legal punishment.
Delinquency is simply refers to the multi-social behaviors of youths under 18 years of age. The term juvenile delinquency is applied to the law of young persons aged 7 and 17 years who commit acts that violate social norms such as theft assault & vandalism.
Crime and deviance are often confused; however a significant distinction can be made between the two concepts. Deviance consists of acts which do not follow the values and expectations of a particular social group or society, crime on the other hand refers to those activities which break the laws of the society and are subject to official punishment. Deviance is the general cause of crime while crime is legal extreme of deviance.
CRIME AGAINST PERSON
These are crimes against people that involve violence or the threat of violence such crimes include homicide (legally defined as the willful killing of one human being by another while Genocide is….
CRIME AGAINST PROPERTY
This is also called property crime. There are crimes that involve theft of property belonging to others e.g. Burglary and arson.
Is a group of intelligence and powerful people that controls power and societal economy.
The Oxford Advanced Learners’ Dictionary defined Police as members of an organization whose job is to keep public order, prevalent and solve problems relating to crime in the society.
Criminology in its simplest meaning is the study of crime and criminal behavior. It is an interdisciplinary field of study in which various aspects of human behavior are involved in analyzing why a particular behavior is referred to as criminal, who defines such behavior as criminal and why, what determined or predisposes individuals into committing crimes and the necessary steps to take in curbing criminal behaviours. Branches of criminology are:
Penology is the study of penal sanctions or punishment of criminals. Punishment can be defined legally as the infliction of pain or suffering or deprivation of something of value in relation to someone who has committed crimes, violate rules or regulations.
Penologist’s works in the Prisons has direct access with prisoners and involved in inmates rehabilitation and eventual return to society. The Penologist is involved in inmate self help, prison and jail management and the treatment of offenders in prisons. They also make closely with prison guards, probation and parole officers.
Is the study of rehabilitation of the victims of crimes. The rehabilitative deals in reality have the tendency to even the actual conditions and activities in correctional institution. The purpose of punishment is the rehabilitation of the criminals in Europe and America prisoners are taught some trade while serving their jail terms do what they will become useful citizens on release this is what we refer to as victimology.
This is an act of violation of law in which there are no readily apparent victim, e.g. use of illegal drugs, homosexuality between consenting adults, prostitution and gambling.
Is the method of investigation and detection of crime, especially the job of this enforcement agencies and forensic experts.
Public Relations is defined as the promotion of rapport and goodwill between a person or institution and other communities at large through the establishment of good neighborliness.
This implies decentralization of police functions to cater for the community security thereby enhancing a close police community relationship in a bid to control and fight crime within that community.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
This is the involvement of the courts and prisons in crime settlements. The criminal justice system is a legal entity, the interrelationships of criminal justice element is comprising of the police, courts and the prisons or what the Americans would refer to as the correctional institutions. The different agencies are linked through a process in which one agency’s output become the next agency’s input.
The output of the police is the arrest of offenders, which in turn, and based on the outcome of police investigation becomes the input to the courts. When the cases are judged, after conviction and sentencing, they become input for the prison.
Therefore, it is through the criminal justice system that due process is achieved with offenders processed right from arrest, detention, prosecution, until they are finally released from prison after serving their sentences, or until execution, for those sentenced to death.
To have a good knowledge of crime data will enable Elites officers to measure the crime rate in our society, Nigeria. Therefore, crime statistics is the order or the criteria used by criminologists to measure the rate of crime in the society.
Criminologists relied on two main sources to obtain information on crime statistics. These are:
According to Ukwayi, J.K the official sources include crime statistics from the annual crime report. This is obtained from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) under the Uniform Crime Report (UCR).
The Bureau receives and compiles records of all reported cases from all over Nigeria. As a result of this, they publish annually all reported cases from each states of the Federation.
Another official source of crime reports comes from the courts and prisons.
Federal office of statistics which is known as Federal Bureau of Statistics is another source of crime statistics.
NDLEA, NAFDAC, SSS, Civil Defence, FBI etc.
The unofficial sources of data collection on crime includes:
Self – report survey
This could be done through the use of questionnaires to allow participants to reveal information about their violation of law.
LIMITATIONS OF CRIME STATISTICS
The limitations of uniform crime report on crime statistics are as follows:
Some crimes like rape victims and attempted suicide are at times not reported due to fear of stigmatization and retaliation from gang members
Exaggeration of crime cases to attract sympathy is another factor that causes harzardness in crime statistics. Here some people use to overestimate their losses in anticipation of better compensation.
Also, criminals find it very difficult to admit their illegal activities.
Distance to police stations. Some police stations are located far away from the people as a result, people feel very reluctant to report cases to police station.
Due to high illiteracy level some find it difficult to report cases because they will not be able to write.
Some refuse to report cases to police due to unnecessary delays.