Model Criminal Code of Criminal Law – The Foundation of Effective Criminal Law
Criminal law is the body of law which governs criminal behavior. It specifically prescribes behavior perceived as dangerous, menacing, or harmful to people’s property, health, safety, or moral well being. A person is guilty of criminal activity when he knowingly commits a crime that falls under the laws regulating criminal behavior. This means, for example, that if you are caught with drugs in your house but are told you were only selling drugs, you are still guilty of drug sales.
There are four major types of criminal law. These include felony, misdemeanor, traffic offenses, and juvenile law. Felonies are punishable by both prison time and fines. Misdemeanors are punishable by probation or suspended sentence, while traffic offenses are punishable by a fine only or with both.
Fines are the most common form of criminal law punishment. This is because it is used as a punitive measure, but the punishment can also include rehabilitation, community service, counseling, and restitution. The severity of a sentence will be determined by the nature of the crime, the defendant’s personal circumstances, the state law, and the relationship between the defendant and the victims.
A criminal law conviction can have serious consequences. Aside from losing your job, you may also be hit with stiff fines, mandatory jail time, and in some states, a substantial amount of loss of potential assets. In contrast, civil law is not punishment. It is usually associated with compensations for personal injuries or property damage. Some compensations include payment for medical bills or pain and suffering.
There are two major bodies of criminal law. One governs felonies, the other civil law. Felonies are punishable by sentences of a year or more. The penalties for felonies are usually referred to as prison time. Most state constitutions and federal acts provide for the punishment of criminal acts with sentences of a year or more. Capital punishment is prohibited in most states, including sections of the United States Constitution.
Civil law does not punish by imprisonment, as do the criminal justice systems of most states. Unlike felonies, civil offenses are not subjected to state and federal prison sentences. The punishment for a crime may depend on a number of factors, including the type of crime, the degree of involvement and planning, and the state law.
Criminal defense attorneys work to protect the rights of their clients by pursuing a case that meets the state and local legal requirements. They must understand the case law as it relates to their clients and abide by the limitations imposed by the law. Civil case law also establishes the parameters that govern criminal cases. Criminal defense attorneys must successfully mount a strong defense on all of the criminal cases they represent. They need to do this in order to prevent their clients from being given the death penalty or spending years in jail.
In some jurisdictions, victims of crime can claim compensation for the losses they incur as a result of the criminal acts of their assailants. Victims of violent crime can file claims for mental pain and suffering, loss of future earnings, past and future medical care, and other direct injuries. People who have been victimized can also seek damages for property damage, pain and suffering, past and future funeral expenses, loss of services such as earning and employment, and other traumas. Furthermore, victims of crime can also assert a wrongful death claim based on negligence. There are many other claims of this nature that have been recognized in the past.
Punishment is a term that is often used in connection with criminal law, but civil law actually provides for more severe punishments than the punishment inflicted on a criminal. In instances where there is a finding of guilt or punishment, victims and their families may petition the court to establish rehabilitation programs for the offenders. In some cases, life sentences and ineligibility for holding certain jobs have been created in order to provide additional incentives for rehabilitation. Additional punishment can also be placed on the offender for more severe offenses.
The penal code established by the legislative body, which oversees criminal law, is referred to as the criminal penal code. The penal code contains several sections that pertain to criminal law. Among these sections are Sections 1320, subdivision (b), reporting crimes, state law, abuse in the penal system, hearsay evidence, private investigations, felonies and sentences, sex crimes, and capital offenses. Model penal code provisions also established several crimes that fall under the category of hate crimes and other offenses that are not considered as criminal acts. Private detectives use information gathered from state agencies, courts, attorneys and victim’s relatives, among other sources, to present a strong case in court.
Modeling an alternative sentencing program using an individualized approach that takes into account the unique needs of an individual is necessary to guarantee successful outcomes. Each of the many different models of alternative sentencing approaches – the discretionary, all offense, all defense, time served, and time spent in pre-trial supervision – were designed to address the unique characteristics of the crimes for which the defendant is charged. Therefore, while many jurisdictions employ a model penal code that clearly outlines the elements of each offense and the Sentencing Guidelines, no two jurisdictions are alike. A better understanding of the nature of crimes as well as the Sentencing Guidelines is the first step in understanding and improving one’s criminal law case.