Liberty University Criminal Sentencing Alternative & Innovative Sentencing Discussion

Criminal sentencing embraces a number of philosophies and seeks to satisfy sometimes conflicting goals: retribution, incapacitation, deterrence, rehabilitation, and restoration. The means to accomplish those tasks have traditionally been comprised of fines, probation, imprisonment, and death. To adapt to the financial, social, and international pressures, the criminal justice system has experimented with mandatory, indeterminate, and structured sentencing. However, each defendant-based alternative must be viewed with in the light of its impact on the victims and society at-large.

Beginning with the material conveyed in the assigned reading and presentation, select two scholarly articles from the university criminal justice databases, and integrate those resources to discuss the practical implications of alternative and innovative sentencing options. Finally, integrate within your discussion the impact of a Judeo-Christian viewpoint on the viability of such new sentencing options.


1) Angelica Pijanowski

A.P Thread

Criminal sentencing is a controversial topic, some still believe in the death penalty, others believe it is inhumane and instead, propose life in prison. Nonetheless, sentencing guidelines exist to not show any signs of bias or favoritism. Rehabilitation plays a significant role in sentencing. Rehabilitation is the goal of restoring a convicted offender to constructive place in society through some form of training or therapy (Cole & Smith, 2010). The sentence one receives should be based on the crime that was committed, retribution says one should suffer for their crime. While deterrence is used to discourage any acts of future crime. Incapacitation is removing offenders from society. Restoration has one pay restitution and or do community service or pay for damages to the victim.

Alternative sentencing is option for offenders other than jail. These options include fines, restitution, community services, and pretrial diversion. These alternative sentences are meant to serve as a second chance, it is a way to not tarnish someone’s record (Lippman, 2010). Typically, it is a choice for first-time offenders and or for people who committed less serious crimes.

Innovative sentencing is a way to punish an individual when conventional methods fail. Judges must put on a different mindset to come up with a solution to make the offender realize their wrongs. By this point, offenders tend to know what the consequences of their crimes are, and they become indifferent. Therefore, it is the judge’s job to come up with a plan to make them see that this time things will be different, and their consequences have changed (Grimsrud, 2002).Some of these punishments include installing breathalyzers in their car and having the car not start up unless the breath is in fact alcohol-free and or completing a drug or alcohol treatment program.

A Bible verse that relates to the topic is Amos 5:24 “But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream. In this verse, the Hebrews are saying that God does not care for fancy churches and ceremonies, God wants everyone to live right and be just. Justice and righteousness are always to be carried out, in and out of the Lord’s house.


100 Bible Verses about Criminal Justice. What Does the Bible Say About Criminal Justice? (2020). Criminal Justice

Cole, G. F., Smith, C. E. (2017). The American system of criminal justice. Australia: Cengage Learning.

Grimsrud, T. (2002). Rethinking God, justice, and treatment of offenders. Journal of Offender Rehabilitation. 35(3).

Lippman, M. (2010). Contemporary Criminal Law: Concepts, Cases, and Controversies (2 ed.). California: Sage Publications Limited.

2)Clayton Wood

Criminal Sentencing

The criminal justice system has changed and will continue to change over the future years. Sentencing structures have and will continue to evolve over the past and coming years. From traditional criminal justice sentencing structure of retribution, incapacitation, deterrence, rehabilitation, and restoration to the more modern sentencing structures. Every type of sentencing has to take account to what it does to the public, and do what other impact do they have.

In Same Crime: Different Punishment? the discussion evolved around a population growth of Ireland in the 1990s and what it did to sentencing. The Republic of Ireland sentencing system is one of the most unstructured systems in the common law world and it mostly depends on a judge’s ruling. “Although this study is not without limitations, these findings suggest that bias is occurring within the criminal justice system and warrants further examination.” (Brandon; 2018) Sentencing problems do not matter the county or system you are in, it had appeared in many different systems where the population growth of non-Irish nationals has created a difference in the sentencing of the criminals. Much like America and the current and future sentencing structure of minority population in the criminal justice system.

The second article Mandatory sentencing? Use [with] discretion looks at when a mandatory sentence is used and shows support for sentencing discretion and not much support for mandatory sentencing. Many models show the public option is cited for the reason for mandatory sentencing. (Warner et all; 2018) When you are discussing mandatory sentencing you have to look at a prosperity of different things, including what was discussed in the previous article. US and other countries have mandatory sentences should be used with discretion and this article discus in depth.

Between mandatory sentencing and different punishments the criminal justice system lacks much need structure when it comes to sentencing guidelines and outcomes. Not many want to admit it but we live and work in a bias system much like many other countries. The criminal justice sentencing structure of retribution, incapacitation, deterrence, rehabilitation, and restoration needs to be address in modern times to address all these in a commonly non bias structure.


Brandon, A., & O’Connell, M. (2018). Same Crime: Different Punishment? Investigating Sentencing Disparities Between Irish and Non-Irish Nationals in the Irish Criminal Justice System. British Journal of Criminology., 58(5), 1127–1146.

Warner, Kate; Spiranovic, Caroline; Freiberg, Arie and Davis, Julia. Mandatory sentencing?: Use [with] discretion [online]. Alternative Law Journal, Vol. 43, No. 4, Dec 2018: 289-294. Availability: ISSN: 1037-969X. [cited 18 Sep 20].


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