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Rational choice theory

Some approaches to crime and deviance and especially crime prevention are based on the assumption that criminals make a rational choice to commit a crime. The suggestion is that when criminals are presented with an opportunity for criminality, they make a cost/benefit analysis. Therefore methods of crime prevention that increase the likelihood of getting caught deter criminality in the first place as the criminal makes a rational choice to avoid prison. Similarly, longer sentences or other more severe punishments have a similar impact.

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