New Restorative Justice Program Allows Certain Charges to be Dropped

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A new Restorative Justice diversion program is announcing by Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert and Police Chief Todd Schmaderer.

Restorative Justice Program

The misdemeanor diversion program “created through a partnership between the city prosecutor, the Omaha Police Department, and the Human Rights and Relations Department is how Stothert would describe it.

Moreover, this offers second chances for low-level offenders arrested for misdemeanors. These include resisting arrest, obstruction and disorderly conduct, Stothert said.

Therefore, the four-hour class is the crux of the program. Moreover, it gives offenders and officers the chance to talk about what led to the arrest. Also, what happened during the arrest in a more unbiased environment.

This Program has Great Benefits

Versus when they were arresting, meeting them and how now they are in a better place in their lives, Human Rights and Relations Assistant Director Gerald Kuhn would explain. Therefore, officers do have an important rule in the restorative justice process both in terms of learning and teaching.

Citizens will have the chance to have a talk with an officer. They can take part in a program and it is optional for the officer. They actually did the arresting. Officers are encouraged to take part as they are one of the parties making referrals to the program.

The better that this program will be if there are more and more voluntary submissions that we get from the Omaha Police Department and if the officers are actually in the field.

Restorative Justice is a Forward-Thinking Idea

Restorative justice is a progressive concept would Schmaderer describe. He said that he is enthusiastic about it.

He sees the concept as “views crime as more than breaking the law.” It will allow the police and the community to develop and maintain positive relationships. Therefore, he believes it will help improve police-community relations.

Needing to complete 12 hours of community service and having no other criminal arrests for a six-month period is what participants need to obtain. The charges will drop, and the record seal, if those requirements are met successfully.

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