Who commits crimes

Complete 4 page APA formatted essay: Who commits crimes.According to Wolfgang, Figlio, and Sellin, (1987) a small percentage of offenders commits a large proportion of criminal offenses. Stated in another way, there are only a few individuals who are repeat offenders or career criminals. The common perception of most people is that more criminals equal more crimes,but the theorists above have proven otherwise. Based on studies they have conducted, they advocate that only a number of crimes may actually be attributed to a few people. Their findings are important in the sense that they show the pattern of behavior that we can expect from potential career criminals. Their study points out that most of these career criminals come from a poor background, have a history of delinquency, and have a lower grade point average while they are in high school. In possibly understanding and curtailing criminal tendencies in potential career criminals, we look into the problem children in school. In the cohort study conducted by Wolfgang and his associates, they uncovered that many of the male offenders were arrested only once or twice, about 19% of the offenders were repeat offenders, and a very small percentage – about 6% were arrested 5 or more times (Wolfgang, 1972, as quoted by Spelman, 1993). Their study implies that we can unearth career criminals by looking into a small percentage of people in the criminal pool. They are the ones we need to worry about because the criminal justice system has become ineffective in rehabilitating them. In a big way, their time in jail may have actually made them hardened criminals. Their findings also indicate how important it is for us to identify and establish factors which may invite and breed criminal behavior. Simply looking into a person’s race, social class, gender, and age is not enough in order to predict criminal behavior. By tracing the pattern of behavior of one criminal, it will tell us a lot about whether or not he is a potential career criminal (Hagan,

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