There are several sociological theories of crime. The criminal justice field is unable to bring these sociological theories together due the fact that they lack the means to understand the crime that imparts guidelines for potential criminal actions. As a result, the criminal justice field has turned their attention on consequences-focused standard that results in arrests and convictions based on practical answers.
The first of these theories is the social control theory which was developed by Travis Hirschi. (Oritz, 2011) This theory asks the question why people follow the law. The answer accepted by this theory is that individuals participate in criminal activity when their attachment to their culture is no longer strong. According to Hirschi's theory when a person has gone through a lack of social influences or an absence of a social system that would ordinarily forbid criminal actions, the probability that a person would commit a crime increases.
Hirschi explains the four fundamentals of the connection to society as attachment, commitment, involvement and belief. The bringing under control of a person's conscience or super ego is decided by a person's bond to others. This is the sociological counterpart to superego. Further, individuals do not break the laws out of their fear of the punishment for doing so. This is the counterpoint of the ego. Hirschi further states that a person deeply engaged in normal goings-on frankly does not have the time to become involved in criminal behavior. Also, one's belief plays a large role in whether or not someone would commit a crime. Either the individual completely turns from their belief they have practiced and been taught or they justify the unusual conduct in such a manner as they participate in the criminal activity, although the individual still considers it to be wrong.