SOLUTION: CMRJ 302 American Military University Offender and Situational Variables Exam

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Criminal Justice Final Exam




Criminal Justice Final Exam
Offender and Situational Variables and How They Impact Police Discretion
Police officers are required to consider the totality of the circumstances that the people
they are policing are in. this necessitates an analysis of the situational variables as they may
affect their judgment. One of the situational variables that may affect the police officer’s
discretion is the presence of a weapon. When the offender has a weapon, it can pose a danger to
both the police officer and the public. This then requires the officer to handle the situation with
care. After analyzing the problem, the police officer may assess whether there is a chance of
making the weapon get off from the offender without hurting anybody (Schaibe et al., 2020).
However, if the offender is aggressive, sometimes the officer is forced to take the weapon by
force where shoot-outs may occur.
Another situational variable is victim-offender relationships. This is especially an issue
when making arrests. Sometimes, the problems are out of the police officers’ control, especially
if it is a hostage case. When confronted by the police, some offenders may try all the stunts to
ensure that they have a chance to defend themselves or run. In such cases, the police officers
have to decide on the actions to take first (Rollwagen & Jacob, 2017). It could be taking down
the offender to rescue the hostage or negotiating with the offender, depending on the situation in
which the offender is holding the victim.
On the offender variables, police officers are human and will be prone to looking at the
physical. Offenders who are properly groomed are likely to receive better treatment from the
officers than those who are not well-groomed. This is a natural reaction to everyone, as
grooming is the first thing that is seen. However, it is essential to note that looking to the outside
of an individual and making decisions based on that could lead to adverse policing outcomes. In



the present day, there have been several accusations and incidents of stereotyping and poor
police treatment due to these stereotypes. Research has shown that African American people are
more likely to be pulled over by police officers than their whit…

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