Patricia E. Erickson, JD, PhD Director & Professor of Criminal Justice

Patricia E. Erickson, JD, PhD

Patricia E. Erickson, PhD is the chair of the Department of Sociololgy, Anthropology and Criminal Justice, and director of the Criminal Justice Program. She is a sociologist and an attorney. Dr. Erickson is especially interested in the areas of domestic violence and child abuse and neglect. She has practiced in Erie County Family Court representing parents as well as children. Dr. Erickson teaches several of the required courses for criminal justice majors including CRJ 337 Violence and the Family, CRJ 449 Criminal Law, CRJ 450 Criminal Procedure, CRJ 382 Criminal Justice Ethics, CRJ 227 Criminal Justice I, CRJ 228 Criminal Justice II, CRJ 254 Crime and Society, CRJ 343 Law and Society, and, as director of the Criminal Justice Program, oversees CRJ 498 and CRJ 499. Dr. Erickson taught inmates at the Attica Correctional Facility through the Consortium of the Niagara Frontier, a program partially sponsored by Canisius College. In 2008, she co-authored Crime, Punishment and Mental Illness: Law and the Behavioral Sciences in Conflict which examines the response of American society to mentally ill persons who commit crimes. Dr. Erickson was an undergraduate at the State University of New York at Buffalo, did her graduate work in sociology at the University of Denver and received her law degree, cum laude, from the State University of New York at Buffalo. To read more about her work, click here (Adobe Acrobat PDF).


  • Sociology of Violent Crime
  • Child Neglect/Abuse
  • Criminalization of Mentally Ill
  • Criminal Law & Procedures