“I thought ‘he’s a monster’… [but] he was just… normal”. Examining the therapeutic benefits of restorative justice for homicide

Walters, Mark Austin (2015) “I thought ‘he’s a monster’… [but] he was just… normal”. Examining the therapeutic benefits of restorative justice for homicide. British Journal of Criminology, 55 (6). pp. 1207-1225. ISSN 0007-0955

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Abstract

This article examines the therapeutic benefits that restorative justice can engender for stakeholders of homicide. Qualitative interviews with participants from a single case study reveal the various long-term emotional traumas caused by such crimes, as well as the many unanswered questions that remain post-conviction. In exploring one family’s journey of restorative justice, this article documents the various aspects of restorative dialogue that can gave rise to positive emotional connections and, in turn, relational transformations between participants. Though such transformations are potentially life-altering, the article also recommends caution, based on findings that certain adverse emotional reactions can be generated via the personal connections that emerge during dialogue. The article concludes that in order to properly address the wider harms caused by homicide, justice agencies should seek to utilise trauma-informed restorative practices via a parallel system of justice.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: restorative justice, homicide, murder
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Law
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology > HV7231 Criminal justice administration
Depositing User: Mark Walters
Date Deposited: 27 Mar 2015 09:47
Last Modified: 07 Mar 2017 06:57
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/53547

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