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- Volume 22, Issue 1, 2009
Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - Volume 22, Issue 1, 2009
Volumes & issues
Volume 22, Issue 1, 2009
Author Ann SkeltonSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp I –IV (2009)More Less
Children do not commit the most crimes. The available official statistics reveal the reality that they make up a small number of the offenders committing serious, violent crimes. The number of children in prison, whilst not a clear indicator of crime trends, is the only reliable set of statistics regarding child offenders in South Africa that have been consistently gathered over the past decade. The Report of the Inspecting Judge of Prisons for 2006-2007 revealed that people below the age of 18 years make up 1.28% of the inmates (sentenced and unsentenced) in prison. The number of children being held in prison awaiting trial has been steadily dropping since 1999, and the number of sentenced children is fairly stable, with a slight drop recorded between 2007-2008.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 1 –14 (2009)More Less
The South African Truth and Reconciliation story has provided a moral inspiration for the rest of the world to reconsider reconciliation. Under the name of 'restorative justice' (RJ), the spirit of ubuntu has opened a world-wide window for experimental criminology to address two key questions. The first question is whether reconciliation is a more effective way to prevent crime than pure punishment. If it is, at least in some cases, the second question is how best to structure and administer a system of reconciliation, with what kinds of offences, victims and offenders. These two questions have been the focus of the fifteen-year long Jerry Lee Program of Randomized Controlled Trials in Restorative Justice, including eleven randomized controlled trials in Australia and England. The evidence so far shows that RJ causes most offenders tested to reduce their frequency of offending more than pure punishment, especially those charged with violent offences. RJ also gives victims far more benefit than pure punishment. The challenge for experimental criminology is now to generate more evidence about the best ways of implementing RJ on a far wider scale.
Author G.M. SpiesSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 15 –24 (2009)More Less
Child sexual abuse is a worldwide problem throughout the history of humankind. It ravages childhood and the effect thereof can not be underestimated. As sexual abuse affects the child on a short as well as on a long term basis, professionals have to explore any possible means to minimize these effects. This discussion highlights the value of restorative justice in this regard as well as the way to apply it to respect the specific needs of the survivor of sexual abuse. If successfully applied, restorative justice may contribute to the healing of the survivor of sexual abuse.
Spatial technology with an emphasis on remote sensing applications for safety and security for macro level analysisAuthor C. EloffSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 25 –36 (2009)More Less
The availability of high-technology software, improved computer processing capability and the combination of multi-layer geographic information systems can provide information about crime and security incidents that were previously overlooked. The geographic information systems (GIS) environment can deal with virtually any type of information about features that can be referenced by geographical location in terms of locational and attribute data. Baseline, thematic, and topographic maps are essential for planning, evaluating and monitoring security related information. Research of this nature can contribute to the application of remote sensing imagery in the broader safety and security environment, which will allow crime to be analysed and combated more effectively through the understanding of land use behaviour. The displacement and diffusion of crime patterns in relation to land use classes and the changes associated with it enables the crime analyst to understand the correlation between specific crimes, their environment and human behaviour as per defined land use class. A multi-sensor approach can also be implemented as a spatial strategy to monitor specific border areas where the delineation of border trails and the automation of change detection can provide valuable information for the South African Police Service to identify illegal cross-border activities.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 37 –45 (2009)More Less
One of the most potent criminal influences which have spread through modern society is that of serial crime, particularly serial rape of females. In the South African context no research has been conducted on the phenomenon of serial rape and international research has limited application in the local context. This article will focus on the initial findings of an ongoing research project on serial rape in the South African context. The study used police records to determine the offender characteristics of nine male South African serial rapists who offended against 75 female adults and children in an attempt to lay the foundation for a scientific offender profile of these offenders, and to compare those characteristics to U.S. serial rape offenders.
Author N.C. De WetSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 46 –67 (2009)More Less
This article reports on findings from a qualitative content analysis of newspaper articles on school violence that was published from June to September 2008, in South Africa. The presentation of the findings is divided into five categories. Identified themes are discussed and supported by direct quotations from the newspaper articles, as well as by references to the literature. The newspaper articles paint a grim picture of learners, educators and parents as perpetrators of school violence. Some of the victims - learners and educators - are described in a sensitive way, while others remain faceless. The analysis also sheds light on the pervasiveness of the problem. Individual, educational, as well as social causes of school violence were identified. The content analysis also revealed two approaches to violence prevention, namely punitive and security measures.
Author J.S. HorneSource: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 68 –80 (2009)More Less
Crime information analysis has proven to be a key component in the armoury of specialists and experts who wish to prevent and investigate crime more successfully. In the forensic investigation of crime, it forms an integral and disciplined part of the crime intelligence cycle. Its detailed and analytical nature can provide timely and pertinent information that allows law enforcers to accurately determine the nature of criminal activities, predict crime occurrences and identify perpetrators responsible for offences. The heart of crime information analysis is centred within its systematic approach, which entails a sound process of collection, collation, analysis, dissemination and feedback of crime information. The important role of crime information analysis cannot be underestimated and its principles and techniques must therefore be applied vigorously to intensify the fight against crime in South Africa. The focus of this paper is on the responsibility of police members belonging to a particular public service organisation to analyse crime information. This research provided sufficient evidence that the application of crime information analysis within a public sector environment responsible for policing has not yet been fully internalised and applied to reap the benefits of the effective prevention and investigation of crime.
Source: Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology 22, pp 81 –101 (2009)More Less
This article puts the world prison population into context and focuses on the management of offender growth as well as imprisonment and deterrence as a strategy to reduce crime. Issues such as benefits, costs and risk factors are considered important only if they have a direct impact on criminal activities and crime prevention. The time served in prison should also be examined to determine if the goals of sentencing can be achieved through shorter prison terms for selected offenders. The latter requires the need to address sentencing and parole policies with a multifaceted approach, incorporating an expanded use of alternatives to imprisonment for low-risk offenders, and a commitment to using imprisonment only if other interventions cannot meet the goals of public safety or justice. Parole boards should also be free to consider the use of parole or probation for long-term prisoners who no longer present a threat to public safety. Finally, the stabilisation or reduction of prison populations will only be possible if policymakers recognise that the size and composition of prison populations are a function of a variety of policy choices regarding sentencing, time served in prison and parole supervision practices.