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Due Process vs Crime Control Essay


Although crime control and due process have some similarities, there are more contrasts between the two. Crime control emphasizes crime prevention, whereas due process emphasizes the protection of citizen’s rights from mistakes made by criminal justice agencies. The ethical dimensions of key issues confronting the criminal justice system and private security concerning to due process and crime control are citizen’s rights, proper legal representation, as well as physical force, when to use deadly force, and deceptions. The private security industry also faces key ethical issues regarding the lack of training, in addition to violations of rules and regulations.

Due Process or Crime Control

The ethical extent of key issues confronting the criminal justice system and private security regarding due process and crime control are many, such as not knowing what the right course of action is, difficulty doing what is considered right, or simply finding the wrong choice to be very tempting. Due process is a citizens’ right to proper legal representation, procedures, and justice of individuals, which decreases the power of government. The main goal of due process is to protect individuals from mistakes made by law enforcement agents and prosecutors.

In contrast, crime control increases the power of the government in order to protect society, which diminishes an individual citizen’s rights (USLegal, Inc., 2001-2008). The main goal of crime control is crime suppression, which includes key issues of physical force, when to use deadly force, undercover work, deceptions, as well as many others in the criminal justice system. In the private security field, the key issues include the lack of training and violations of rules and regulations of the industry (Gould, 2008).

Due Process

According to Packer’s due process model, which consists of the following points of view, emphasizes the contrasts with the crime control model (Cliffnotes.com). 1. The most important function of criminal justice should be to provide due process or fundamental fairness under the law. 2. Criminal justice should concentrate on defendants’ rights, not victims’ rights, because the Bill of Rights expressly provides for the protection of defendants’ rights. 3. Police powers should be limited to prevent official oppression of the individual. 4. Constitutional rights are not mere technicalities; criminal justice authorities should be held accountable to rules, procedures, and guidelines to ensure fairness and consistency in the justice process. 5. The criminal justice process should look like an obstacle course, consisting of a series of impediments that take the form of procedural safeguards that serve as much to protect the factually innocent as to convict the factually guilty. 6. The government should not hold a person guilty solely on the basis of the facts; a person should be found guilty only if the government follows legal procedures in its fact-finding.

Crime Control

The following contentions are the key concerns of the crime control, which points out the differences of due process. (Cliffnotes.com). 1. The repression of crime should be the most important function of criminal justice because order is a necessary condition for a free society. 2. Criminal justice should concentrate on vindicating victims’ rights rather than on protecting defendants’ rights. 3. Police powers should be expanded to make it easier to investigate, arrest, search, seize, and convict. 4. Legal technicalities that handcuff the police should be eliminated. 5. The criminal justice process should operate like an assembly-line conveyor belt, moving cases swiftly along toward their disposition. 6. If the police make an arrest and a prosecutor files criminal charges, the accused should be presumed guilty because the fact-finding of police and prosecutors is highly reliable. 7. The main objective of the criminal justice process should be to discover the truth or to establish the factual guilt of the accused.

Similarities between Due Process and Crime Control

Although the differences are many and well emphasized, there are a few similarities between due process and crime control. Both uphold laws and regulations that have been established throughout the many years of this country. The similarities are:

1.Accept constitutional values

2.Hold to ex post facto prohibition

3.Duty to enforce laws where violations have occurred


Due process and crime control propose to serve similar objectives, which are to reduce crime and protect the citizens of the United States. The ethical key issues that plague the due process and crime control models vary among the two, in how to deal with the many issues and the best way to deal with the issues are conflicting. The differences between the two on how to reach these objectives are many, yet the few similarities assist in keeping both processes abide by the laws established by the government of the United States.


USLegal, Inc. (2001-2008). US Legal Definitions. Retrieved on January 5, 2010 from http://definitions.uslegal.com/c/crime-control-model/ Gould, M. (2008). Business, Ethics & Society, (p. 1). Great Neck Publishing. Retrieved January 4, 2010, from Research Starters – Business database. CliffsNotes.com. (n.d.). Which Model? Crime Control or Due Process. Retrieved on January 4, 2010, from http://www.cliffsnotes.com/WileyCDA/CliffsReviewTopic/topicArticleId-10065,articleId-9911.html

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