Award Date

7-2006

Degree Type

Capstone

Degree Name

Master of Public Administration (MPA)

Department

Public Administration

First Committee Member

Christopher Stream, Chair

Number of Pages

17

Abstract

Both the criminal justice and the juvenile justice systems have experienced increased strain due to criminal acts committed by juveniles. Many experts suggest that one way to ease the burden of the courts can be found in the theory of restorative justice. Most often the juvenile justice system is most concerned with the risk and needs of youthful offenders without significant consideration for the victims. A key component in the restorative justice theory is victim offender mediation which seeks to reduce the impact of crime on victims and the community. Clark County, Nevada has one such program, the Victim Offender Restitution Program (VORP).

In this analysis we examine the VORP program to determine its value to the victim and community. In keeping with the philosophy of restorative justice the emphasis is on the victim. Further, benchmarking with similar programs will assist in illustrating areas of competency and those where changes may prove helpful.

We found that the existing collected data were not sufficient to make a conclusive finding of victim satisfaction. We also found that the number of staff and number of cases completed were slightly inversely correlated. In terms of benchmarking, we found that most other agencies conducted programs geared for sex offenders and have major ties with private nonprofit entities. To the extent possible the Clark County program was benchmarked with others and proved to be on par with most in their methodology and outcomes.

We submit that the VORP program should collect data at the onset, during and after program participation. The data collected needs to be identifiable as to whether it is victim or offender information. Additionally, methods to track offenders who successfully complete the program should be considered for comparison of recidivism rates and restitution to other county funded programs.

Keywords

Juvenile courts; Juvenile delinquency — Prevention; Juvenile delinquents; Restorative justice; Victims

Disciplines

Juvenile Law | Other Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Public Administration | Public Policy | Social Policy

Language

English

Comments

Appendixes attached

AppendixA.pdf (428 kB)
AppendixB.pdf (313 kB)
AppendixC.pdf (1232 kB)
AppendixD.pdf (460 kB)