Verbal and nonverbal communication can affect the way that communication is interpreted among many people throughout society and within the criminal justice system. Communication is the best way to relay information whether it is verbal or nonverbal. Both of these forms of communication can be effective throughout the criminal justice system from police situations, courtroom settings, and correction facilities to a juvenile facility. Verbal and nonverbal communication can be valuable when there is a police situation. In a situation such as a robbery, the witnesses would use both verbal and nonverbal communication in order to help the police with the investigation. Witnesses are most likely to use body language such as putting their head down, not looking directly at the officer or crossing their arms during an interrogation. They would also use gestures with their hands to identify different descriptions of a suspect or the scene of the crime.
Witnesses are also likely to tell the investigator verbally what they saw. In a police situation where an officer or the chief of police is making a public announcement verbal communication would be the most important and the most used form of communication when making a public announcement. While making a public announcement, the officer or chief of police will have to verbally inform the public of whatever the situation is going on. Verbal communication would be the primary choice when it comes to testifying in court. Verbally, all parties in the court room setting would use this form of communication to get information throughout the courtroom. The attorneys will communicate verbally among each other, the witnesses, the jurors and the judge. An example of the communicating verbally when testifying would be the attorneys questioning the person that is on the stand which would be a witness or the defendant in the case. When the witness or defendant is giving their testimony it will be communicated to the attorneys, jurors and the judge in order for jury to come to a verdict in the case.
I do also believe that nonverbal communication can be used when testifying. Nonverbal communication while testifying would include not looking directly at the attorney who is asking the questions. In a corrections facility both verbal and nonverbal are factors when dealing with your peers, inmates or other employees within the facility. Depending on the situation, I believe that both of these communication methods are able to be used successfully to communicate with one another. When dealing with the inmates, using nonverbal communication could work just as well as verbal communication. Most of the time, once an inmate sees a worker or correction officer they will know what is to be done without the officer speaking a word to them. Then, there are times where officers will have to use verbal communication, to get a direct order across to an inmate. In particular, if a hostile situation that is taking place and they have to take in control of the situation.
When dealing with other employees in the facility, officers can communicate with each other through verbal communication or nonverbal if they want to become discreet around the inmates. Most of the time, the employees may be verbal through walkie talkies or in person with one another. In a juvenile facility, verbal communication may be the best way to communicate with the juveniles. Juveniles may find it very hard to listen to direct orders coming from superiors but, communicating to them verbally will have a better outcome than trying to communicate with them nonverbally. Juveniles will respond to nonverbal communication such as gestures from the officers. Juveniles dealing with other juvenile inmates, they would use nonverbal communication.
Many times juvenile facilities will have gangs or multiple juveniles who are friends or associates before they came to the juvenile facility. These juveniles will use nonverbal communication to communicate with each other under the radar of the officers. They may use gang hand signs, body gestures or possibly the way that they wear their clothing. If a juvenile rolls their sleeve up on their shirt, this could be a way of communicating with other juveniles telling them what gang they are a part of or if they are trying to pick a fight. Verbal communication between the juveniles in the facilities is also used. Juveniles would most likely speak in code to one other so the officers would not know what they are saying to each other. Speaking in code is a big form of communication among the juveniles in the detention centers.
This could leave the officers out of the loop or distract them from leads on possible escapes or fights that are going to take place. Among all of these areas of the criminal justice system, all of them deal with verbal and nonverbal communication. Both forms of communication verbal and nonverbal are effective in all areas in the justice system. Police situations, courtroom settings, corrections facilities and juvenile facilities all use these forms of communication different to make them effective for their use. Communication is a key part in making all areas of the criminal justice system function with clarity and understanding.
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 10 October 2016
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