All crimes are not equal. If someone is caught stealing a few inexpensive items from a convenience store, then the perpetrator would likely be prosecuted and pay the consequence for committing the crime; however, the consequence for that act would be much less severe than for someone who stole a car. Other factors, such as whether the perpetrator used a firearm to steal those items, affect the consequences as well. To judge crimes as fairly and evenly as possible, crimes must be classified.
For this Assignment, you will classify types of crimes, describe the elements of and punishments associated with crimes, and consider how law functions in criminal cases.
To prepare for this Assignment:
- Review the Learning Resources on criminal and civil law.
- Focus on the differences between misdemeanors and felonies (e.g., what constitutes each and how their consequences can vary).
- Consider how crimes associate with their corresponding punishments, as well as how crimes can be leveraged against different entities like property, people, and government.
By Day 7
Submit your responses to the following prompts:
- In 150–225 words (2–3 paragraphs), explain the terms felony and misdemeanor. Specifically:
- Describe elements of felonies and misdemeanors.
- Provide at least three examples of each of these types of crimes.
- Identify punishments typically associated with felonies versus misdemeanors.
For this prompt, be sure to reference at least one scholarly source to support your answer.
- Jason Chapman stole a vehicle from Colette Dewhurst’s driveway. While he was driving the car down the road at an excessive rate of speed, Chapman ran into Raymond Miller’s store window and caused extensive damage. In 300–375 words (4–5 paragraphs), address the following questions:
- Can Dewhurst and Miller bring a civil action against Jason Chapman?
- Can the state take action against Jason Chapman?
- What functions does the law serve in this case?
For this prompt, be sure to reference at least two scholarly sources to support your answer.