Walden University Restorative Justice Accountability Case Study Paper
This week’s Learning Resources provide information about many different restorative justice strategies designed to help offenders be accountable and repair harm. While these strategies are presented in the context of the juvenile justice system, most are also used in the adult justice system except for family group conferencing. The strategies may involve indirect contact with the victim (e.g., apology letter, financial restitution) or direct contact in victim-offender mediations. If a victim chooses to participate in a face-to-face meeting with an offender, a trained facilitator guides the dialogue and allows ample opportunity for both parties to express feelings, ask questions, and address harm or damages. After the meeting, the offender is not automatically free; he or she may still have other punishments, such as probation or jail time, that must be completed.
For this Assignment, you revisit the crimes that Jordan committed when he carjacked Emma. As you do so, think about why restorative justice might be appropriate in this case, which specific strategies might be most useful to provide accountability and repair harm to Emma, and how you would approach the role of a facilitator in a meeting between Jordan and Emma. Be sure to only focus on Jordan this week. Next week, you will focus on Dante. Review the case details here:
It is 4:38 p.m. on a cold January day in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Emma, a 34-year-old fifth-grade teacher, exits the elementary school where she works to a nearly empty parking lot. As she approaches her car, she unlocks the doors with the key fob and places her laptop and purse in the back seat. She walks around to the driver‘s side, opens the door, and gets in. Before she can close the door, two people approach her. One is a 15-year-old teenager named Dante, and the other is a 21-year-old adult named Jordan. Dante yells, “Give me the keys or you’re dead.” Emma initially protests but then notices that Jordan has a gun. Jordan becomes impatient and hits Emma in the head with the gun. Dante and Jordan pull the disoriented and bleeding Emma out of the car and onto a nearby grassy area. Then they speed away in her car.
A few minutes after the carjacking, a man walking home from work sees Emma bleeding in the parking lot and calls 911. Emma is transported to the nearest hospital, where her injuries are treated. After being released from the hospital, Emma has chronic headaches and finds it difficult to concentrate. She is also in debt due to medical bills and car repairs. While Emma is angry about the crime, she also realizes how easy it is for young people to become involved in criminal activity.
Dante is arrested and charged with second-degree assault and armed carjacking. His case is pending in juvenile court. Jordan is arrested, charged with possession of a firearm with the intent to injure, aggravated assault, and armed carjacking. He has two prior convictions, one for possession of opioids with intent to distribute when he was 15 and one for breaking and entering when he was 17. Jordan dropped out of school at 16, has never been employed, and is currently addicted to opioids. In court, he pleads guilty to the crimes and expresses a strong desire to change. The judge sentences him to 3 years of probation with the option to suspend the sentence if he participates in a restorative justice program.
Formulate a 750- to 1,000-word response to the case study that addresses the following:
- Provide an argument for why a restorative justice approach would be appropriate given what you know about Jordan, the crimes he committed, and Emma.
- How did the crimes affect Emma? Be specific.
- Which restorative justice strategies would you recommend to ensure that Jordan provides sufficient accountability and repairs harm to Emma? Why?
- To what degree are Jordan and Emma good candidates for a face-to-face meeting?
- If you were the facilitator of a meeting between Jordan and Emma, how would you prepare for and guide the meeting? What would be the desired outcomes of the meeting and why? What issues or challenges might arise during the meeting?
Be sure to reference the course readings and examples from the case study to support your responses.