The Right Timing

An Overview of the 5 Objectives of the Criminal Justice System

Criminal Law in HoustonEvery second all over the world, crimes are committed against persons, property, or even against statutes themselves. It is a wonder why people commit crimes despite knowledge of the existence of criminal laws that can provide punishment for wrongdoing. Is this a symptom of a bigger problem that is a reflection of the inadequacies of the criminal justice system?

Maybe you are also wondering what the purpose of criminal law is if every moment there is someone who is violating the rights of others. While the defendant can always seek help from a criminal lawyer, this is not a guaranteed escape plan from penalties and consequences. There are essentially five purposes or objectives of criminal law. David A. Nachtigall and other criminal lawyers from Houston share more information below:


Families of victims of crimes often seek some form of retribution for the wrongdoing done to them. This is perhaps one of the more evident reasons for the existence of the criminal justice system. People who commit crimes should also be punished for their crimes although not necessarily in the same manner inflicted on the victim of the crime.


Judgments made regarding crimes can act as deterrent to future criminal acts both by the defendant and by the general public. The punishments or penalties imposed during the sentencing can serve as discouragement to those in the general public not to make the same mistake or commit similar crimes. For the defendant, the sentencing is supposed to deter him from committing criminal acts in the future.


For the general population, an individual convicted of a crime must not be allowed to mingle with the rest of society without any guarantees that the person will not do the same crime again. In incapacitation, the goal of criminal law is to effectively protect the public from the criminal acts of the defendant. In some societies, this is carried out in the form of a death sentence or banishment. In most societies, however, it can mean life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.


One of the often forgotten objectives of the criminal justice system, rehabilitation aims to transform the offender into becoming a valuable member of the general population once he serves his time in prison. Here, they are taught skills that will render them useful in general society.


In some forms of crimes, the offender may be ordered to restore or repair any damages inflicted on the victim. The purpose is to restore the status or position of the victim to his pre-crime state.

These are the five objectives of the criminal justice system. While they may seem light at first glance, they nonetheless serve their purpose.

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