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What do you get when you add Megan Williams to Matthew Sheppard and victim-offender mediation? A hate crime law that prosecutors will actually want to use.

Pugh, Catherine
June 4, 2015

Source: (2008) California Western Law Review. 45(1):179-233.

Part II details the most significant obstacle undermining pursuit of hate crimes, proving motive. Part III addresses the fissure between society’s needs and a prosecutor’s objectives when it comes to hate crimes pursuit. Further, this section examines shortcomings of society’s one-dimensional approach to punishing hate crimes. Part IV considers the current federal hate crimes laws, followed by a brief comparison between current and proposed law. This section concludes with a discussion on how proposed law can potentially overcome state obstacles. Part V considers an adjustment to proposed laws. That is, it suggests that Congress incorporate VOM into hate crimes penalties by (1) amending current legislation to include public funding for departments of corrections VOM programs; and, (2) developing guidelines and procedures for the Bureau of Prisons to accommodate VOM use within the federal penal system. This comment evaluates the benefits of VOM from three perspectives: first, how folding VOM into the judicial process can potentially entice prosecutors to pursue hate crimes because in at least cases of non-violent hate, a conviction is assured; next, how the restorative justice approach can further cure the actual damage from both non- and severely-violent hate crimes; and finally, how offender confrontation offers more of a long-term cure than the current incarceration-only approach. Finally, in Part VI, we return to Megan Williams and West Virginia State Prosecutor Brian Abrahams, and consider their circumstances as a way to model the question of hate crimes management for the larger legal community and general public. (excerpt)


AbstractCourtsHate CrimeNorth America and CaribbeanPolicePolicyPoliticsPrisonsRestorative PracticesRJ and the WorkplaceRJ in SchoolsRJ OfficeStatutes and LegislationTeachers and StudentsVictim Support
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