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Stpidity the Key Text  In this report of 1856, the chaplain of Stafford Gaol, the Reverend R H Goodacre, refers to his belief that

"crime is not generally occasioned by want or destitution, or in any great degree owing to the circumstances or condition in life of the persons who commit it, but that the chief cause of crime in this County is a low standard of intelligence, education and morality . . "

His statistical analysis had shown that most prisoners were between the ages of 15 & 25,

"when the passions are the strongest and the judgement the weakest."

His answer was not harsh punishment but education. However, the magistrates felt that it was not Goodacre's place to offer such opinions and soon afterwards he was dismissed.

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