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  • Author or Editor: Karen Corteen x
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Female sex worker victim characteristics and their social, situational and interactive contexts have not substantially changed. Yet, the manner in which female sex worker victimisation is currently understood has changed in some quarters. This chapter documents the unusual inclusion of female sex workers into Merseyside police hate crime policy and practice. Given that female sex workers embody a ‘non-ideal’ victim identity the focus here is to consider what this development may mean for Christie’s (1986) ‘ideal victim’ thesis. In so doing the role (or lack of) emotion and compassion will be discussed. The chapter concludes that victims and victimisation have been reimagined and new victimisations have arisen. However, with regard to hate crime, and the social construction of, and criminal justice responses to the victimisation of female sex workers Christie’s ‘ideal victim’ thesis remains contemporarily relevant and predominantly intact.

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This chapter is concerned with police abolitionism. It outlines how efforts to reform the police and prevent police violence have failed. The discussion of police abolitionism is contextualised in relation to the police killing of George Floyd in the US and subsequent calls to defund the police. Using examples of police violence from both the US and the UK, and drawing on other evidence, this chapter makes the case for police abolitionism. It highlights proposed alternative solutions that comprise safer ways and systems for dealing with public safety and approaches that support and empower strong communities to deal with social problems. This chapter concludes by suggesting that at the heart of the problem with the police is their origins and functions, their politicisation, expansion, intensification and militarisation, and what they are being expected to manage – namely social problems and inequalities.

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Only by understanding the past and its relationship with, and impact upon, the present can the notion of ‘crime’ and criminal justice responses to it be understood. This is the focus of the chapter. It discusses the social construction of crime and in so doing it illustrates how the concept of crime is contested and contextual. Through looking at the past and the present, it can be seen that what constitutes crime changes over time, place and culture. This chapter demonstrates that in social, political and media spheres there is an obsession with street crime and that crimes of the powerful are neglected. Therefore, the concept of ‘crime’ excludes many serious harms. Finally, this chapter discusses changes in policing, the court system and punishment, and it documents the impact of recent technological changes on crime and criminal justice.

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Punishment is never a random activity but always one that fits with the society of which it is a part. This chapter deals with the concept and practice of punishment in relation to the criminal justice system in England and Wales. In so doing, it pays particular attention to imprisonment as a form of punishment, as, in the UK and other places around the world, imprisonment is one of the most severe forms of punishment. This chapter focuses on people in prison. It discusses the purpose, type and degree of punishment, prisons and imprisonment as a method of punishment, the changing face of punishment, and contemporary prisons and imprisonment. It concludes that contemporarily prisons and imprisonment still punish both the mind and the body.

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The Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) 1984 is considered a key moment in police history and the single most important piece of legislation related to policing in England and Wales. It provides the framework for police powers in relation to individual citizens in England and Wales. PACE also provides direction to other organisations that conduct criminal investigation, such as HM Revenue and Customs. This chapter provides a critical evaluation of PACE. It discusses police powers prior to PACE, circumstances leading to its enactment and its impact. In particular, the chapter focuses on two controversial powers enabled by PACE, namely, stop and search and detention. It concludes that, despite the successes of PACE with regard to police accountability so far, there are continued calls for even greater accountability and transparency.

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Police custody is a fundamental component of the criminal justice process at home and abroad. It is also one of the most controversial and key aspects of policing. This chapter critically evaluates the policy and practice of police custody in England and Wales. It explores the Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) 1984, police custody, and the two safeguards regarding police custody in England and Wales, namely the appropriate adult safeguard and the Independent Custody Visiting Scheme. Despite such safeguards, in practice, due to the competing demands made of the police, the rights of detainees are not always a priority. In addition, although PACE 1984 intended to tighten up the regulation of police custody, police discretion and the permissiveness of the law mean that in reality this has not happened. It suggests that during and post-COVID-19 may offer some hope of improvement in police custody.

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Within the domains of criminal justice and mental health care, critical debate concerning ‘care’ versus ‘control’ and ‘therapy’ versus ‘security’ is now commonplace. Indeed, the ‘hybridisation’ of these areas is now a familiar theme.

This unique and topical text provides an array of expert analyses from key contributors in the field that explore the interface between criminal justice and mental health. Using concise yet robust definitions of key terms and concepts, it consolidates scholarly analysis of theory, policy and practice. Readers are provided with practical debates, in addition to the theoretical and ideological concerns surrounding the risk assessment, treatment, control and risk management in a cross-disciplinary context.

Included in this book is recommended further reading and an index of legislation, making it an ideal resource for students at undergraduate and postgraduate level, together with researchers and practitioners in the field.

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Actuarialism, broadly, is the use of calculation in the prediction and estimation of behaviours in relation to risk. The categorisation of ‘risky’ populations facilitates the management of these groups.

Actuarial practices have been observed to pervade numerous aspects of the management of offender populations. With its links to the ‘new penology’ (Feeley and Simon, 1992), actuarialism seeks to find resolution of the management of deviant populations and, importantly, the ‘risks’ that they pose. The principles of actuarialism are observable within a variety of criminal justice agencies operating with common interests in offender management. Risk assessments and clinical risk assessments produce categories and diagnoses. Once applied, these aggregated labels prove valuable to the criminal justice process as particular systems, facilities and approaches are delivered in response to risk thresholds.

Actuarial practices are increasingly prevalent in line with the economic imperatives placed on criminal justice agencies. The systematic placement of individuals into groups judged on their perceived risk to self or others fulfils the requirements of schemes that are ‘value for money’ and maintain adequate levels of public protection. In such circumstances, individualised rehabilitative imperatives are at risk of coming secondary to such priorities.

The deployment of an actuarial language has been seen to be the most progressive in areas of offender management. Probation services and those involved in the monitoring and assessment of offenders on community sentences and leaving custody are examples of those directly involved in the application of actuarial practices. However, actuarial practices can also be observed across other professions involved in the maintenance of public protection.

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Battered Woman Syndrome (BWS) was first conceptualised in 1977 by Lenore Walker when submitting a research grant application to the United States National Institute of Mental Health (Walker, 1979). The resultant BWS research supported two key concepts – learned helplessness and the cycle theory of violence (Walker, 1979) – which are still used in domestic violence work today.

Learned helplessness theory suggested that human beings who consistently fail to control their environment eventually stop trying to do so (Seligman, 1975). Walker (1979) developed this concept by linking the continual abuse inflicted by a male partner to an unconscious acceptance in the female partner that the situation could not be changed, thus producing feelings of helplessness. She also noted that a previous history of abuse could facilitate this process. The cycle theory of violence indicated that tension built within the relationship, violence erupted at some point and then a period of reconciliation followed, before the tension built again. As the woman never knew when the violence would erupt, she lived in a constant state of anxiety, resulting in a number of psychological symptoms, later defined as a subset of post-traumatic stress disorder (Walker, 2009).

Walker (1979) argued that the presence of these factors could trigger a violent act from a woman towards her male partner due to her expectation of further physical abuse and heightened emotional state. Where this resulted in her partner’s serious injury or death, the courts were asked to consider it an act of self-defence resulting from BWS, even though this was not a recognised psychological condition.

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Care in the community is the policy of relocating people with severe mental health problems, formerly styled ‘mental patients’, from mental hospitals to sites in the community. Although it has pre-war antecedents, and the closure of the Victorian lunatic asylum was heralded in 1960 by Health Minister Enoch Powell, the policy was formally adopted by the government only in the 1980s. The promotion of alternatives to authoritarian mental hospitals found widespread support among a disaffected post-war generation. In his seminal work Asylums (Goffman, 1961), US sociologist Erving Goffman captured the public mood with his portrayals of the degradations of asylum regimes. However, community care was soon being derided as a cover for cost-cutting measures. Amid headlines in tabloids (eg the Daily Mail and the Daily Mirror) such as ‘Freed mental patients kill two a month’ (Norris, 1997), a succession of cases involving former mental patients were flagged by the media, notably, the killing by Christopher Clunis of a stranger, Jonathan Zito, on the platform of a tube station. The ‘tube murder case’ was deployed as a symbol of the failings of community care policies (Hallam, 2002). The association between mental illness and violence was widely assumed and a person with mental illness who committed a violent act came to embody a fearful stereotype, even more so where black mentally disordered offenders were concerned.

In a climate increasingly governed by the politics of fear, the incoming Labour government announced sterner and more restrictive measures. ‘Community care has failed’, declared Health Minister Frank Dobson in 1998. Hereafter, concerns over risk took precedence, leading to the introduction of Community Treatment Orders (CTOs).

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