Instructions: Let’s revisit the
case studies we used in Week 1. Please read each scenario carefully and
answer the following questions: (1) If you were the judge, how would
you achieve specific deterrence in each scenario? (2) How would you
achieve general deterrence? (3) Is your decision consistent with
Beccaria’s arguments on the certainty, celerity (swiftness), and
severity of punishment? Your response to EACH case study should be at
least 150 words.
1 You are a police officer and you are buying a
cup of coffee at the local “Stop and Rob” convenience store. You see a
juvenile male place a quart of milk inside his jacket. You approach the
person and tell him to open his jacket. He complies. He apologizes for
his actions. He explains that he could not afford to buy the milk but he
needs it for his child. He promises not to do it again and asks you to
let him go.
2 A major pharmaceutical company introduces a new
weight-loss drug. Although the pharmaceutical company knows that the
drug may increase the chances of heart attacks and strokes, the
company’s warning label states that, “Product X has no known side
effects.” After the drug is linked to hundreds of heart attacks and
strokes and dozens of deaths, the company pulls the drug off the market.
Laura has had a hard day at work. Before going home, she decides to
stop at a local bar and have a couple drinks. After consuming several
drinks, she decides to drive home. She runs a red light and crashes
head-on into another vehicle. The two occupants of the other vehicle are
killed. One of the occupants of the car was 6 months pregnant at the
time of the crash. Laura’s blood alcohol content was .18. She has a
previous conviction for Driving Under the Influence (DUI).
and Amy have been in a relationship for 10 years. Amy has grown tired of
the relationship and has been having an affair with another man for the
last 6 months. Amy and her lover make a plan to kill her husband. Amy
takes out a $500,000 life insurance policy on her husband. Several weeks
later, her lover breaks into Amy’s house and shoots and kills her
husband. He takes a few valuables from the house to make it look like a
5 You and your partner are dispatched to a domestic
dispute. When you arrive, you hear loud voices inside the house. You
knock on the door and announce that you are with the police department. A
small-framed male answers the door. You advise him that you’ve received
a call about a domestic dispute. You notice that the man has a small
amount of blood dripping from his lower lip, which also appears to be
bruised. You ask the man if he is okay or in need of medical attention.
In an effeminate voice, he advises you that he and his “roommate” have
had a little fight that “got out of hand.” A larger male is standing in
the kitchen and he seems irritated that you are there. He speaks up and
says “We were arguing and I lost my temper a little.” The smaller male
advises you that he does not need medical attention and that he does not
want to press charges.