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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 98977 Find in a Library
Title: Criminal Justice System and Minorities - A Review of the Literature (From Criminal Justice System and Blacks, P 125-156, 1984, Daniel Georges-Abeyie, ed. - See NCJ-98968)
Author(s): D Georges-Abeyie
Date Published: 1984
Page Count: 31
Sponsoring Agency: Clark Boardman Company, Ltd
New York, NY 10014
Sale Source: Clark Boardman Company, Ltd
435 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10014
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter explores the dynamics and extent of minority crime and criminal victimization, racial bias in the criminal justice system, and minority knowledge and perceptions of the system's components and processing mechanisms.
Abstract: Data indicate that racial and ethnic minorities both perpetrate and are victims of a disproportionate amount of personal and property crime. The extent of offending and victimization varies with the specific offense examined. Numerous theories have attempted to explain this overrepresentation in terms of cultural, economic, and other socioenvironmental factors. A number of studies have suggested that criminal justice processing, particularly through discretionary decisions, operates on a double standard that discriminates against minorities. A number of other studies have either failed to find discrimination or have found processing and sentencing disparities to be related to other factors such as offender attitude, age, and previous record. A number of studies have found that ignorance of the law and legal processes is a serious problem among minorities, and that minorities appear to be unable to use the law as a constructive social process. Studies of attitudes toward the criminal justice system indicate that, compared to whites, minorities have negative perceptions of the police and have had negative contacts with and/or hold negative attitudes toward criminal justice agencies. These findings hold both for lower class and upper and middle-class minorities. Because criminology is predominantly a white social science, there must be a black commitment to revealing the injustices and consequences of bias in the criminal justice system. Fifty-eight notes, 98 references, and 6 data tables are provided.
Index Term(s): Behavioral science research; Black/African Americans; Black/White Crime Comparisons; Crime patterns; Crime surveys; Literature reviews; Minorities; Police discretion; Public Opinion of the Courts; Public Opinion of the Police; Racial discrimination; Social conditions; Victimization surveys
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