Focusing Attention on Career Criminals

An Idea Whose Time Has Come

by Joan R. Petersilia

Download

Download Free Electronic Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.5 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

Purchase

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback15 pages $20.00 $16.00 20% Web Discount

Discusses major programs being developed to deal selectively with career criminals, such as LEAA's Career Criminal Prosecution Program. The author reviews studies conducted at RAND to identify characteristics of career criminals. Most do not specialize but engage in a variety of crimes. They do not routinely plan their crimes, nor are they well rewarded. Drugs and alcohol play a prominent role in a crime career. Career criminals commit an average of 20 felonies per year of street time. Serious criminal careers begin at around age 14, peak in the early 20s and decline until age 30, when most criminal careers end. The author discusses the implications of career criminal programs for significantly reducing crime. Suggestions for containing career criminal behavior include waiving the protection of the juvenile justice system for hardcore juvenile offenders.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.