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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 90511 Find in a Library
Title: Criminological Problems of Diagnostic Activities in the Italian Criminal-Justice System (From Criminological Diagnosis - An International Perspective, P 109-127, 1983, Franco Ferracuti and Marvin E Wolfgang, ed. - See NCJ-90506)
Author(s): G Canepa
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 19
Sponsoring Agency: Lexington Books
New York, NY 10022
Sale Source: Lexington Books
866 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10022
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The data reviewed indicate that in the Italian criminal justice system, diagnostic judgments of interest to the criminologist are the exclusive prerogative of the magistrates in compliance with existing criminal law, and the contributions of experts (in the procedural form of the expert report) are permitted only in the psychiatric sphere.
Abstract: In the present Italian system, provision is made for diagnostic judgments as part of the crime prevention activities of juvenile courts and the police. In the present application of the law, diagnostic activity is developed by clinical laypeople (police and magistrates), who are limited to labeling predelinquent behavior or defining exterior behavioral aspects according to legal criteria. Diagnostic judgments are also to be expected in the course of judicial inquiries developed by magistrates alone or with the aid of experts. These judgments deal primarily with imputability, social dangerousness, capacity to become delinquent, and the classification of delinquents. In the correctional phase, problems arise in the application of detention and security measures as well as in postprison assistance. This involves making diagnostic judgments that do not correspond to a specific and systematic legal norm. Modifications should be made in the various diagnostic areas so that the judge is in constant collaboration with experts. In the judicial inquiry phase, this means observation of the personality and its dynamic assessment in relation to the crime, possible indication of a psychiatric investigation, and the preliminary programming of treatment. In the correctional phase, this means conducting treatment with successive determinations of the appropriateness of either incarceration or conditional release. Thirty-seven notes are provided.
Index Term(s): Forensic psychology; Italy; Judicial discretion; Juvenile delinquency prevention; Police discretion; Psychological evaluation; Psychologists role in corrections
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