University of Tennessee Criminal Justice Courts Brothel Boy Case Paper – Excelsior Writers |
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Using the parable “The Brothel Boy,” students will write a 5-6-page paper.The paper must be typed, double-spaced, with 1” margins and a 12-point font (Times New Roman font preferred). NOTE: You MUST use evidence (i.e. explicit quotations/statements) from the story to support your responses.


Although the parable of the Brothel Boy took place in a foreign country (Burma) and a different time period (1920’s), some of the issues it raises (i.e., the moral deservedness of capital punishment and the issue of “blame” and “guilt”) can still be applied to modern-day times. As the author so clearly puts it, the Brothel Boy is “deliberately fashioned to tease out issues on which thoughtful people have differed for centuries” (Morris, 1992; p. 25). For example, what is “justice”? Is it “justice” to hang an intellectually disable boy, who was born and raised in a brothel, for attempting to rape a “virgin girl” and whose only persistent defense is “Please Sir, I paid, I’m sorry Sir.”?

Simply put, whether you are talking about a third world country such as Burma or the 1920’s, issues such as defining “justice”, the complexities of law, the force of public opinion in shaping sentence outcomes, or the general tendency to look for a scapegoat for an heinous offense then vigorously pursue that they be punish, remains prominent issues facing our modern-day criminal justice system.

Therefore, while the modern-day criminal procedures were not followed in the story, your task is to correct that by using what you have learned in this course (see course objectives [CO] in the syllabus) to modernize the handling of the Brothel Boy’s case (i.e., answer the questions below as though the crime, arrest and trial occurred in 2019).


  • Paragraph 1 – Calming down the town
    • Description: The town is in uproar over the death of the virgin girl. To stop a riot from occurring, pretend you are a news reporter informing the public about the case. This you would do by:
    • Your Task
      • Briefly summarize the parable. Your summary should include:
        • The background information of the Brothel Boy
        • His actions (what is he accused of doing?)
  • Paragraph 2 – Elements of a Crime
    • Description: Use your expertise and knowledge of the criminal justice system to informed the public of whether or not a crime was committed.
    • Your Task: (CO2)
      • What are the elements of a crime?
      • Were those elements met? Be sure to explain your answer.
  • Paragraph 3 – Calming down the terrified Brothel Boy.
    • Description: The Brothel Boy is afraid and confuse because he does not know the criminal procedures and thus does not understand what is happening. So, pretend you are a friend trying to ease his anxieties by explaining to him the steps of the pretrial criminal procedures:
    • Your Task (CO4)
      • Beginning with arrest, present the steps of the pretrial criminal procedures in order.
      • Briefly discuss what takes place at each step.
  • Paragraph 4 – Role/Duties of the Prosecutor
    • Description:Pretend you’re the prosecutor in the case.
    • Your Task (CO3)
      • What are the role/duties of a prosecutor?
      • Would you charge the Brothel Boy with a crime; if so what crime?
      • Why or why not?
  • Paragraph 5 – Role/Duties of a Defense Attorney
    • Description: Pretend you’ve been assigned the defense attorney for the Brothel Boy
    • Your Task (CO3)
      • What are the role/duties of a defense attorney?
      • What legal defense would you use?
      • Why?
  • Paragraph 6 – Role/Duties of a Judge
    • Description: Pretend you’ve been assigned the Judge in the case
    • Your Task (CO3 & CO5)
      • What are the role/duties of a judge during the pretrial stages (arrest to arraignment)?
      • Pretend the Brothel Boy was tried and convicted; what sentence would you impose and why? NOTE: To answer this question you may want to read ahead to chapter 14 of the text for ideas on sentencing options.
  • Paragraph 7 – Outcome
    • Description: Here you will discuss what ultimately happened to the Brothel boy and present your personal views of that outcome.
    • Your Task (CO6)
      • What was the ultimate fate of the brothel boy?
      • Do you feel justice was served why or why not?

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