ANALYSIS OF INVESTIGATION IN CRIMINAL BEHAVIOUR IN NIGERIA
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During the closing decades of the twentieth century, owerri justice policy underwent major change. In less than a generation, a justice system that had viewed most young lawbreakers as youngsters whose crimes were the product of immaturity was transformed into one that stands ready to hold many youths to the same standard of criminal accountability it imposes on adults (Elizabeth & Laurence, 2008).
Universally, until 1998, children aged ten to fourteen who were charged with a criminal offence were presumed, in any court hearing, to be doliincapax (‘incapable of evil’); that is, they were presumed not to be capable of knowing that a particular behavior was ‘seriously wrong’ as opposed to being merely ‘naughty’(Elizabeth & Laurence, 2008). In England, for example, it was the responsibility of the prosecution to demonstrate, beyond reasonable doubt, that the child in question was capable of recognizing behavior that was seriously wrong. Children aged between ten and fourteen were thus afforded some procedural protection from the full weight of the criminal law (Newburn, 2002). However, the presumption of doliincapax was abolished in England by the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (Bandalli, 2000).
Although ‘crime’ is a fiercely contested concept (Muncie, 2001), in legal terms a crime occurs when a specific act that is proscribed in law is committed. An act may have harmful consequences and be regarded as morally reprehensible, but if it is not so proscribed then a criminal offence has not been committed. Therefore anti-social behaviors of the minors should not be considered as a crime. Mooney and Young (2006) argue that anti-social behaviors, as the name implies, should be perceived as infringements of social or moral norms, not criminal codes.
Justice system for minors has gradually developed to what it is today. In South Africa, for example, there are two main factors that promoted the development of justice system for the minors: the number of crimes committed by minors increased through the 1980s and early 1990s, peaking in 1995 (Jansson, 2007); and media coverage of high-profile cases and the frequent portrayal of hooded teenagers terrorizing communities suggested that young people are becoming increasingly criminalized. Indeed, one study found that 71 per cent of media stories about young people were negative and a third of articles concerned the issue of crime (Ipsos MORI, 2006).
Since the inception of a justice system that ensures young law breakers are dealt with in the same standard as adults reports indicate that the levels of crime have decreased and have been stable since 2005/06 (Jansson, 2007). However, although the introduction of the justice system for minors saw a reduction in crimes committed by the youth, it is well-recognized internationally, and in Nigeria, that preventing crime is an essential and effective part of longterm crime reduction.
In USA and Britain National household surveys have been carried out to measure the level of owerri Investigation in crime. Such studies have generally found that offending is widespread amongst youth, but that most offending is relatively minor and transient in nature (Visher & Roth 2010). Large scale self-report studies on representative owerri samples conducted in Australia, such as adolescents in particular schools or in particular suburbs of major cities indicate that owerri offending is widespread (Mak, 2011).
It is not only developed countries that are facing this situation; in developing countries as well there are new pressures on young people undergoing the transition from childhood to independence. In Africa, rapid population growth, the unavailability of housing and support services, poverty, unemployment and underemployment among youth, the decline in the authority of local communities, overcrowding in poor urban areas, the disintegration of the family, and ineffective educational systems are some of the pressures young people must deal with (Ojo, 2012).NIn Nigeria, according to study carried out in Kamiti Youth Corrective Training centre (KYTC) the increase in the number of minors who drop out of school, the escalating poverty and unemployment level, poor parenting strategies and drug abuse among the young people, have seen steep increase of minors involved in crime (Omboto et al. 2013). The study further found out that most of the criminals in the major towns in Nigeria are aged between 15 and 25 years. When these young stars take drugs, they cease to be normal people. They turn to crime to get money for drugs (Makhoha, 2008). is one of the counties in Nigeria that is exposed to the pressures of crime. Several clashes in the county that is led by the youth indicate the delinquency of the youth into criminal activities (Falcetto, 2012).
Strict law enforcement combined with tough criminal justice and sentencing systems, has failed to reduce crime effectively and has led to soaring rates of imprisonment at great cost to governments (Elizabeth & Laurence, 2008). In addition, researchers argue that International evidence indicates that young people, particularly those who are committing first crimes, tend to get involved in a range of crimes rather than specializing in a certain type of crime. In addition, international research shows that young people who commit crime are likely to experience other problems such as bullying, attempted suicide, drug use, lying, hostility and, unprotected sex (Omboto et al., 2013; Akers & Sellers 2008). These are important indicators for identifying at risk youth who may be targeted for early crime prevention programmes.
For many owerri today, traditional patterns guiding the relationships and transitions between family, school and work are being challenged (Akers & Sellers, 2008). Social relations that ensure a smooth process of socialization are collapsing; lifestyle trajectories are becoming more varied and less predictable. The restructuring of the labour market, the extension of the maturity gap (the period of dependence of young adults on the family) and, arguably, the more limited opportunities to become an independent adult are all changes influencing relationships with family and friends, educational opportunities and choices, labour market participation, leisure activities and lifestyles (Prior & Paris, 2005).
Owerri nowadays, regardless of gender, social origin or country of residence, are subject to individual risks but are also being presented with new individual opportunities; some beneficial and some potentially harmful. Quite often, advantage is being taken of illegal opportunities as young people commit various offences, become addicted to drugs, and use violence against their peers. According to Omboto et al. (2013) the minors are not able to distinguish which factors will perpetuate their indulgence into criminal activities. They therefore get involved in criminal activities without their knowledge (Omboto et al.2013). According to Mooney and Young (2006), studies need to be carried out to identify the context specific factors that promote owerri Investigation in crime. It is in line with this background that this study sought to distinguish the opportunities presented to youths that contribute to Investigation of minors into criminal activities.
Crime is a major concern to every nation. More so is the Investigation of minors in criminal activities. In Nigeria there is increasing cases of children involved in criminal activities indicated by the high number of minors arrested or sentenced due to criminal acts (Omboto et al. 2013). However, although the justice system ensures that the minors are subject to law for any criminal activity, the tough laws have failed to reduce crime effectively. Instead the laws have only led to soaring rates of imprisonment which is at great cost to governments (Ojo, 2012).
The problem of owerri delinquency is still becoming more complicated and universal, and crime prevention programmes are either unequipped to deal with the present realities or do not exist. Moreover, researchers have neglected this area of study (Mooney & Young, 2006). While Omboto et al. (2013) carried out a study in Nigeria to assess the factors influencing youth crime and owerri delinquency, the study did not focus on owerri but rather convicted youths in prisons. Another study by Makokha (2008) focused on the male capital offenders in Kamiti Prison. Additionally, Mooney & Young (2006) argues that it is difficult to construct an accurate picture of crime among minors, due to a lack of long-term, selfreport studies and changes to legislation on minors involved in crime. There is therefore knowledge gap on the Investigation of owerri Investigation in crime.
Research however revealed that generally, a person’s decision to commit crime is based on a range of complex and intersecting social, personal, and environmental factors (Omboto et al. 2013; Jansson, 2007; Visher & Roth, 2010; Ojo, 2012). Becoming familiar with these social and environmental causes, and seeking ways to address them, are at the heart of youth crime prevention and are also the key areas for local government intervention. This study therefore sought to examine the Investigation of criminal behaviour in Owerri.
- 1.3 Research questions
- What are the factors that promote investigation of criminal behaviour in Owerri?
- What is the level of investigation of criminal behaviours in Owerri?
- How has investigation of criminal behaviours impacted on ?
- 1.4 Objectives of the study
- To examine the factors that promote investigation of criminal behaviour in
- To find out the level of investigation of criminal behaviours in Owerri
- To investigate the impact of investigation of criminal behaviours in Owerri
- 1.5 Research Premises
- Neglect from parents promotes investigation of criminal behaviour in Owerri
- There is high level of investigation of criminal behaviour in Owerri
- There is insecurity in due to investigation of criminal behaviours
- 1.6 Justification and Significance of the study
Crime is a priority concern in Nigeria. Of particular concern is the fact that young people make up the largest group of victims of violent crime; and that they are also the majority perpetrators of crime in our cities (Omboto et al. 2013). Indeed, some young people are themselves both victims and perpetrators of crime. Owerri crime prevention programmes need to find innovative ways of addressing this duality.
Some aspects of children’s behaviors, such as temperament, are established during the first 5 years of life (Elizabeth & Laurence, 2008). This foundation, coupled with children’s exposure to certain risk and protective factors, influences the likelihood of children becoming delinquent at a young age. However, the identification of these multiple risk and protective factors has proven to be a difficult task. Although no magic solutions exist for preventing or correcting child delinquency, identifying risk and protective factors remains essential to developing interventions to prevent child delinquency from escalating into chronic criminality.
In a bid to ensure social development in the country, as one of the major pillars in the Millennium Development Goals and Nigeria’s Vision 2030, the government is putting up measures to deal with crime in the country. Crime among the youth has attracted attention as the government ratified conventions and developed laws to deal with young criminal offenders. The information from this study may help the government in developing more effective strategies in dealing with criminal activities among the minors.
The information from this study might also be useful to the general public in understanding the increase in rate of criminal activities by the minors. The identification of the Investigation of minors’ Investigation in criminal behaviors may assist the parents and guardians in putting up early measures to curb crime among the minors. Further the information from this study could also assist the community and the society in general in preventing and developing policies to deal with crime.
Crime and ways to deal with crime has received a lot of attention from researchers. However, most studies have focused on the prevention measures of crime among adults (Makoha, 2008). Recently focus have turned on crime among minors as it is generally agreed that preventing criminal behaviors at early age will come a long way in reducing crime in the country. The study on the Investigation of owerri’ Investigation in criminal behaviors in will therefore attract researchers and academicians who are in need of educating more and providing solutions to effective and efficient crime prevention and reduction among minors. Hopefully, the information from the study will also form a basis for other researchers and academicians who are willing to carry out studies in the same field in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The study was carried out in . The county was chosen by the researcher following reports in the mainstream media in the month of December 2013 that a large number of youths are involved in crime in the county (Gatonye, 2014). This was witnessed by several clashes in the county that majorly involved the youths. Recent reports by the police also indicate an increase in crime among the youths.
The study focused in determining the specific kind of crime activities that owerri are getting involved in , the level of Investigation compared to other parts of the Country, the causes of such Investigation and the strategies that can be employed to minimize, control, prevent and eradicate the Investigation of owerri in crime. The study will focus on crime committed within the period 2013 to 2014.
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