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The sentencing circle is a method of dealing with members of the community that have broken the law. A sentencing circle is conducted after the individual has been in the present western justice system and found guilty or if the accused has accepted guilt and is willing to assume their responsibility. This sentencing method encourages the offender and the community to accept responsibility and acknowledges the harm they have done to society and to victims.
A sentencing circle's aim is to shift the process of sentencing from punishment to rehabilitation and responsibility. It provides a new alternative for courts to incarceration. The sentencing circle proves an opportunity to start the healing process for both the offender and the victim. The offender is presented with the impact of their actions in front of respected community members, elders, peers, family, the victim and their family, stimulating an opportunity for real change.
* willing to participate and accept responsibility for his/her actions;
* willing to face his/her victims and make whatever amends may be necessary;
* willing to participate in traditional or Christian ceremonies to initiate the healing process;
* willing to spend time with an Elder and participate in any preparations the Elder recommends at his/her home reserve or his/her choice; and
* willing to make whatever legal amends necessary to the victim and do whatever is necessary to the victim to reconcile the negative relationship created between themselves, the victim and the community as a result of the offense.
Circles are found in the Native American cultures of the United States and Canada, and are used there for many purposes. Their adaptation to the criminal justice system developed in the 1980s as First Nations peoples of the Yukon and local justice officials attempted to build closer ties between the community and the formal justice system. In 1991, Judge Barry Stuart of the Yukon Territorial Court introduced the sentencing circle as a means of sharing the justice process with the community (Bazemore and Umbreit 1999:6; Crnkovich 1995:3; Coates et. al. 2000:4).
One of the best-known uses of the sentencing circle is the Hollow Water First Nations Community Holistic Healing Circle. Community members used circles to deal with the high level of alcoholism in Hollow Water. In the safety of those circles, many began to disclose experiences with sexual abuse. This led to development of healing circles as a way of dealing with the harm created by the offender, of healing the victim and of restoring the community
Originally posted by Duzey
What kind of work will you be doing with them?
Originally posted by Duzey
This wouldn't apply to a sociopath/psychopath, but they probably wouldn't be given the opportunity to go through a restorative justice program in the first place.
Ten Bandits and what they got:
Jack L Clark, President and chairman of Four Seasons Nursing Centers, Clark finagled financial reports and earnings projections to inflate his stock artificially. Shareholders lost $200 million dollars. Sentence: One year in prison.
John Peter Galantis, As portfolio manager of two mutual funds, Galanis bilked investors of nearly $10 million. Sentence: Six months in prison and fiver years probation.
Virgil A McGowen, As manager of the Bank of America branch in San Francisco, McGowen siphoned off $591, 921 in clandestine loans to friends. Almost none was recovered. Sentence: Six months in prison, five years probation, and a $3,600 fine.
How Americans are Murdered:
Firearms: 11, 381
Knife or other cutting instrument: 3,957
Other weapon: club, arson, poison, strangulation etc.: 2,609
Persona Weapon: hands, fists etc.: 1,310
How Americans Are Really Murdered:
Occupational hazard and disease: 61,700
Inadequate Emergency Medical Care: 20,000
Knife or other cutting instrument, including scalpel: 15, 957
Firearms: 11, 381
Other weapons: club, poison, hypodermic, prescription drug: 4,609
Personal weapon, hands, fists, etc.: 1,310.
Originally posted by clearwater
I think justice circles are more concerned with justice and less concerned with perpetuating a class system. The number of psychopaths in any given culture, is probably best reflected by those who oppress, than by the unfortunates caught in a vicious cycle of poverty.