Categories of Criminal Justice Personnel in the USA - Course Work Example

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George Washington University
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Course work
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In the U.S.A the criminal justice system is composed of different parts namely law enforcement, Courts, and Corrections. The law enforcement process which is responsible for upholding the law, criminal investigation, and apprehension of those people who break the law is the first component. The personnel involved in this area of law enforcement include sheriffs, patrol officers, federal agents, detectives and park rangers. The second component is the courts which are responsible for ensuring that peoples rights are not violated and that they are subjected to a free and fair trial before a decision on a sentence is reached. The criminal justice personnel involved in the courts include defense lawyers, Judges, Prosecutors and jury members. The final component is corrections tasked with the responsibility of ensuring that all the convicted offenders serve their sentence as ordered by the courts. Also, supervision of the convicts as they serve their sentence occurs under this component. The criminal justice personnel involved here include correction officers, parole officers, and probation officers ("U.S. Criminal Justice System Overview |", n.d.). Of all these criminal justice personnel, there are those who are considered as either part-time or full-time participants during the court process.

For the criminal justice personnel to be considered as either full time or part time participant in the court process, there are several factors involved. First, the role that the staff play in the court process. Those that play an important part in the whole process are considered to participate fully in the court's process of hearing and reaching a verdict in a particular case. Full-time criminal justice professionals are considered so since most of the case in the court process will have to involve them. One factor that dictates the functionality of full-time criminal justice professionals is that their professional obligations are devoted wholly and exclusively to the court process. When it comes to part-time participants to the court process, these are criminal justice personnel that are involved partially in the court process because they have potentially other conflicting professional responsibilities. They come to play when needed for a particular process during the court process and when their participation might prove to be substantial in the court process.

One example of a criminal justice professional role considered full-time is public defenders. One characteristic that qualifies public defenders to fall under a full-time participation in the court process is that they spend most of their time in courts receiving case assignments, plea negotiations, trials, and handling bail hearings ("Role of the Public Defender Public Defender", n.d.). Also, public defenders have the role of challenging the criminal justice system well and ensuring that their clients guilty or innocent are subject to a fair trial and ensure that their constitutional rights are preserved. All the process involved in preparing witnesses, negotiating with prosecutors, and developing a trial strategy qualifies public defenders as full-time participants ("Role of the Public Defender Public Defender", n.d.). A good example of a criminal justice professional involved I a part-time basis in a court process is the probation officers. They prepare a pre-sentence report after trial or plea agreement which is used by the judge to determine punishment. Probation officers are partly employed in the court process but mostly deal with supervising the defendants in the community and also offer assistance in rehabilitating the defendants who are affected by drugs or alcohol addiction ("U.S. Criminal Justice System Overview |", n.d.).



Role of the Public Defender Public Defender. Retrieved 16 August 2017, from

U.S. Criminal Justice System Overview | Retrieved 16 August 2017, from


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