Criminal Justice Today: An Introductory Text for the 21st Century / Edition 13

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Once again, Schmalleger is the most current and popular text on the market and continues to lead as the gold-standard among criminal justice texts today!

Criminal Justice Today: An Introductory Text for the 21st Century, 13e continues to lead as the gold-standard for criminal justice texts. Best-selling, student- and instructor-preferred, and time-tested–Schmalleger is the most current and popular text on the market. This textbook guides criminal justice students in the struggle to find a satisfying balance between freedom and security. True to its origins, the thirteenth edition focuses on the crime picture in America and on the three traditional elements of the criminal justice system: police, courts, and corrections. This edition continues to question the viability of our freedoms in a world that has grown increasingly more dangerous. Students are asked to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the American justice system as it struggles to adapt to an increasingly multicultural society and to a society in which the rights of a few can threaten the safety of many.

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Editorial Reviews

A textbook for a first college course, focusing on innovations and potentials in the field rather than its traditions and conventional practice. Covers crime in America, policing, adjudication, corrections, and special issues such as juvenile delinquency and drugs. Updated every two years since the 1991 first edition with new information and ideas and the latest examples. Colorfully illustrated throughout. Software with simulations is available to accompany the course, and a Web site provides students and instructors with current data. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780133460049
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 1/17/2014
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 13
  • Pages: 720
  • Sales rank: 54,133
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 10.80 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Frank Schmalleger, Ph.D., is Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. He holds degrees from the University of Notre Dame and Ohio State University, having earned both a master’s (1970) and a doctorate in sociology (1974) from Ohio State University with a special emphasis in criminology. From 1976 to 1994, he taught criminology and criminal justice courses at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke. For the last 16 of those years, he chaired the university’s Department of Sociology, Social Work, and Criminal Justice. The university named him Distinguished Professor in 1991.

Schmalleger is also the Director of the Justice Research Association, a private consulting firm and think tank focusing on issues of crime and justice. The Justice Research Association (JRA) serves the needs of the nation’s civil and criminal justice planners and administrators through workshops, conferences, and grant-writing and program-evaluation support. JRA also sponsors the Criminal Justice Distance Learning Consortium, which resides on the Web at

Schmalleger has taught in the online graduate program of the New School for Social Research, helping to build the world’s first electronic classrooms in support of distance learning through computer telecommunications. As an adjunct professor with Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri, Schmalleger helped develop the university’s graduate program in security administration and loss prevention. He taught courses in that curriculum for more than a decade. An avid Web user and Website builder, Schmalleger is also the creator of a number of award-winning World Wide Web sites, including one that supports this textbook (

Frank Schmalleger is the author of numerous articles and more than 30 books, including the widely used Criminal Justice: A Brief Introduction (Prentice Hall, 2008), Criminology Today (Prentice Hall, 2009), and Criminal Law Today (Prentice Hall, 2006).

Schmalleger is also founding editor of the journal Criminal Justice Studies. He has served as editor for the Prentice Hall series Criminal Justice in the Twenty-First Century and as imprint adviser for Greenwood Publishing Group’s criminal justice reference series.

Schmalleger’s philosophy of both teaching and writing can be summed up in these words: “In order to communicate knowledge we must first catch, then hold, a person’s interest—be it student, colleague, or policymaker. Our writing, our speaking, and our teaching must be relevant to the problems facing people today, and they must in some way help solve those problems.” Visit the author’s website at

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Table of Contents


Chapter 1 What Is Criminal Justice?

Chapter 2 The Crime Picture

Chapter 3 The Search for Causes

Chapter 4 Criminal Law


Chapter 5 Policing: History and Structure

Chapter 6 Policing: Purpose and Organization

Chapter 7 Policing: Legal Aspects

Chapter 8 Policing: Issues and Challenges


Chapter 9 The Courts: Structure and Participants

Chapter 10 Pretrial Activities and the Criminal Trial

Chapter 11 Sentencing


Chapter 12 Probation, Parole, and Intermediate Sanctions

Chapter 13 Prisons and Jails

Chapter 14 Prison Life


Chapter 15 Juvenile Justice

Chapter 16 Drugs and Crime

Chapter 17 Terrorism and Multinational Criminal Justice

Chapter 18 The Future of Criminal Justice

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Customer Reviews

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2012

    Outstanding Source of Factual Information

    This was a book I had to use for a criminal justice course I was taking. Any more you can ask someone a question about a trail going on in their town or nationally and all of a sudden you have a 30 minute conversation about what should happen to the individual and also what the defense position should be and how the prosecutor should approach the trial. There are also all types of shows on television that give individuals a perception of how the legal system works. Sadly this is television where shows are made for entertainment and not how the legal system really works. With the ever changing legal system and challenges to law enforcement officials this book definitely helps understand the legal system, and challenges in and outside the legal system. It also helps you understand that the criminal justice system and ways to fight crime is not a science and there is not necessarily a formula that will work in all parts of the country. What may work in inner cities may not work in rural areas. The foundations are the same however the structure built on the foundation will differ.
    This book starts out by providing the reader with Crime in America. It explores a brief history of crime in America and then takes a look at criminal justice system and its functions. Understanding how the system works and is structured will give an individual more insight as to why things happen during trials. It will open your eyes as to what is reality versus what we perceive. You will also look at the various theories associated with criminal behavior and help you understand what agencies are doing to face and fight criminal behavior.
    Part two looks at policing, its history and structure, purpose and organization, legal aspects and the issues and challenges of policing. Part three takes one through adjudication. It looks atthe courts; structure and participants, pretrial activities and the criminal trial, and sentencing. Part four looks at corrections dealing with probation, parole, and community corrections. It provides information on prisons, jails and looks at prison life for those incarcerated. Part five looks at special issues. It covers juvenile justice and most find this area very interesting because juvenile crimes continue to grow especially those involving violent crimes. The chapter also covers drugs and crime, terrorism and multinational criminal justice, and the future of criminal justice.
    This book was full of helpful information. It dispels a lot of myths about what one thinks they know about the legal system and shows them what it is really like. Television provides one with what is called “The CSI Effect.” The CSI effect, also known as the CSI syndrome and the CSI infection, is any of several ways in which the exaggerated portrayal of forensic science on crime television shows such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation influences public perception. The term most often refers to the belief that jurors have come to demand more forensic evidence in criminal trials, thereby raising the effective standard of proof for prosecutors. While this belief is widely held among American legal professionals, some studies have suggested that crime shows are unlikely to cause such an effect, although frequent CSI viewers may place a lower value on circumstantial evidence. As technology improves and becomes more prevalent throughout society, people may also develop higher expectations for the capab

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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