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An Experiment in Police-Based Restorative Justice: The Bethlehem (PA) Project.

McCold, Paul
June 4, 2015

Source: (2004) In Peter C. Kratcoski, ed., Correctional Counseling and Treatment, 5th ed. Long Grove, Illinois: Waveland Press, Inc. Pp. 15-29.

In 1991, writes Paul McCold, police-based family group conferencing as a community policing technique was pioneered in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia. Prior to his own study, McCold states that empirical evaluation of restorative policing has been based on a ‘before/after’ design. That evaluation indicated a reduction in referrals to court following the introduction of conferencing in Wagga Wagga. Qualitative studies of restorative policing have suggested significant, positive changes in the attitude of the police toward their own role and work. McCold builds on previous research with a study of restorative policing in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Specifically, he examines the effects of restorative policing practice on police, victims, offenders, and the community. He also compares his results with equivalent data on formal adjudication and with other restorative approaches (e.g., victim-offender mediation).


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