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NCJ Number: 64482 Find in a Library
Title: DUTIES, WORK METHODS, AND PERSPECTIVES OF COURT ASSISTANCE
Journal: BEWAEHRUNGSHILFE  Volume:26  Issue:3  Dated:(1979)  Pages:231-240
Author(s): R MAI
Corporate Author: Deutsche Bewahrungshilfe
Friedrich-Ebert-Strasse 11b
West Germany (Former)
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 10
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: THE TASKS, PROCEDURES, AND FUTURE OBLIGATIONS OF THE WEST GERMAN COURT ASSISTANCE ARE DETERMINED.
Abstract: BY INVESTIGATING AN OFFENDER'S PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL BACKGROUND, THE WEST GERMAN COURT ASSISTANCE IS OF VITAL IMPORTANCE IN AN OFFENDER-ORIENTED CONCEPT OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE. UNDER THE SUPERVISION OF JUDICIAL INSTITUTIONS (COURTS, PROSECUTORS, PAROLE BOARDS), COURT ASSISTANCE SERVES TWO MAIN FUNCTIONS: (1) RESEARCHING AN OFFENDER'S BACKGROUND PRIOR TO THE TRIAL AND (2) ADVISING IN PAROLE AND PROBATION DECISIONS. COURT ASSISTANCE IS NOT AN OBLIGATORY PART OF PRETRIAL INVESTIGATION, BUT FOR PARTICULAR TYPES OF OFFENSES AND OFFENDERS, SOCIAL WORKERS ARE ROUTINELY ASKED TO ADD TO THE STRICTLY OFFENSE-ORIENTED EVIDENCE. AS A SOCIOPSYCHOLOGICAL EXPERT, THE COURT ASSISTANT SEEKS A CONFIDENTIAL RELATIONSHIP WITH THE ACCUSED, INTERVIEWS HIS FAMILY, VISITS HIS IMMEDIATE ENVIRONMENT, AND CONTACTS RELEVANT THIRD PARTIES (E.G., VICTIMS, EXPERT WITNESSES). HE ALSO OBTAINS NECESSARY AID FOR THE ACCUSED BY COLLABORATING WITH APPROPRIATE SOCIAL INSTITUTIONS. THE FINAL SOCIOPSYCHOLOGICAL EVALUATION PRESENTED AT THE TRIAL INCLUDES A LONGITUDINAL REPORT COVERING THE ACCUSED'S PREVIOUS LIFE, A DIAGONAL ANALYSIS OF HIS PRESENT ENVIRONMENT AND STATE OF MIND, AND A PREDICTION OF THE POTENTIAL FOR REHABILITATION. IN SPITE OF ITS 50-YEAR HISTORY IN SOME PARTS OF GERMANY, THE POSSIBILITIES OF COURT ASSISTANCE ARE NOT FULLY REALIZED. IN THE FUTURE, THE EFFORTS OF COURT ASSISTANCE SHOULD BEGIN AS SOON AS POSSIBLE (PREFERRABLY IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE POLICE HAVE IDENTIFIED A PERSON AS AN OFFENDER) IN ORDER TO ALLOW AMPLE TIME FOR THE EVALUATION PROCESS, ASSIST OFFENDERS AT A TIME OF PERSONAL CRISIS, AND ADVISE ON DIVERSIONARY POSSIBILITIES AND ALTERNATIVE FORMS OF PUNISHMENT. --IN GERMAN. (SAJ)
Index Term(s): Background investigations; Germany; Offenders; Parole investigations; Presentence investigations; Social conditions; Social psychology; Social service agencies; Social workers
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=64482

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