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The Community Remedy

Under the ASB, Crime & Policing Act 2014 a mandatory requirement was placed on Police Forces to discuss out of court disposal options with victims of crime, this process is known as the Community Remedy. This Community Remedy gives the victim the opportunity to have a say in how the person responsible is dealt with by police. Dealing appropriately with certain types of crime out of court, means victims get justice quicker and the offender has to face immediate consequences for their actions. Offering and discussing the Community Remedy with a victim is not optional, it is mandatory and forms part of a police officer’s decision-making process when considering any out of court disposal.  There are a menu of options which fall under three broad headings, which should be discussed with the victim:

  • Reparation
    1. The offender can be requested to pay for or repair damage or clean graffiti – non enforceable, voluntary, therefore to utilise the perpetrator must be willing.
  • Restorative
    1. Facilitated face to face meeting between victim and offender.
    2. A written or verbal communication and apology from the offender to the victim (for more information see the separate Restorative Justice page on this website
  •  Rehabilitation
    1. Referral to an intervention programme (Youth Triage)
    2. Referral to an outreach programme (Alcohol Misuse)
    3. Other programmes that may be commissioned by the OPCC

Criteria

When police officers are considering whether the offence is suitable to offer the Community Remedy, as an out of court disposal, there are three broad considerations to be taken into account:

THE OFFENDER

The offender accepts responsibility for the offence and is not disqualified by virtue of:

  1. The offender is subject to an existing court order, on bail for other offences, under active investigation or are pending decision for other offences, or is wanted on warrant.
  2. Where the offender has received a Community Resolution disposal within the last 12 months (youth offenders may receive subsequent Community Resolution disposals within that period if referred to, accepted by, and fully cooperating with the youth triage process).
  3. Where the offence(s) scores 4 on a professional guide called the ‘gravity matrix’
  4. Where the value of property damaged exceed £500
  5. Where the value of property stolen exceeds £200

THE VICTIM

Agrees to process (having been talked through the Community Remedy options). If the victim does not agree to the use of an Out of Court Disposal, this should be recorded, but the police have the final say having regard to all the circumstances.

IT IS A LESS SERIOUS OFFENCE

‘Less serious’ is not nationally defined, but should be determined on a case by case basis taking into consideration the following:

  1. The type of offence
  2. The offender’s previous record
  3. The circumstances of the offence (the classification of the offence may appear serious although the circumstances may be less so and a community resolution still be appropriate.)
  4. The risk to the public and community confidence in the police
  5. The likely penalty
  6. Whether Community Resolution or other OOCD is appropriate, given the circumstances of the offence

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