June, 16th, 2014
Restoration is one of the goals of the criminal justice system. The idea of restoration is to restore the criminal and the community affected by the crime. Restorative justice stems from the idea of restoration. Restorative justice is different than retributive justice. In this essay I will discuss the restorative justice process, the difference between restorative and contemporary justice, and how restorative justice worked for the RJ city case study.
Restorative Justice Process
Restorative justice deals with "the need to compensate victims, the need to place appropriate responsibility on the criminal ...view middle of the document...
They meet face-to-face to discuss the crime and the impact of the crime. ("Restorative Justice Online", 1996-2014). There is support for the victim and the offender. There may also be a representative of the justice system. Like the circles, a trained facilitator will guide the discussions and make sure each person gets time to discuss their feelings about the crime and its impact. The idea of the conference is to show the offender how much harm he/she has caused by committing a crime. It is to make the offender feel sorry for what he/she did and understand how much of a negative affect it had on everybody.
Victim-offender mediation is similar to conferencing. It brings together the victim and the offender. A trained facilitator guides the discussion to help discuss how to restore the victim and the offender. The victims tell their perspective of the crime and ask the offender questions. The offender is allowed to explain why they commited the crime and to answer any questions from the victims. The victim and offender have to volunteer to participate. Victim-offender mediation has three phases, deciding if VOM is appropriate, a meeting, and follow-up. VOM can only take place after the guilt has been established.
Retributive vs. Restorative Justice
The biggest difference between retributive and restorative justices is who is more involved in the process.
With retributive justice, the state is the one most involved. A crime is considered to be against the state. The state controls the crime. The offender is punished by the state. The victim is not as involved with the retributive justice system. The focus is more on deterring the crime by issuing pain. The community is not involved with the retributive system. There is an adversarial relationship with retributive justice. The criminal is alone with most of the process, trying to defend him/herself.
The restorative justice system involves the community. A crime is considered to be against the victim and the community. The crime control lies in the community. The offender has to take responsibility for him/herself and understand that there was harm done with the offense. Victims are necessary for the restorative justice system. The idea is to repair the defendant and the community/victim. The community works together to restore the people involved in the crime. The whole process involves both the offender and the victim and tries to restore both parties. The offender understands his/her guilt and learns how much the crime has affected everybody. The idea of the restorative justice system is for the victim and offender to have complete communication and resolve the issue completely.
RJ City Case
When looking at the RJ city case, I saw that the restorative justice system worked out great for David, Mildred and the community.
David was quick to realize he did something wrong. He felt guilty immediately after...