RAPID INTERVENTION COMMUNITY COURT Enhancing public safety by addressing the root causes of criminal behavior Presentation at VT Law School November 15th 2013 PUBLIC SAFETY OR INSANITY? • “Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results” – -Benjamin Franklin What exactly is Rapid Intervention Community Court? (AKA RICC) RICC The mission of RICC is to provide immediate services that address the root causes of criminal behavior. Defining the Problem • • • • • • Department of Corrections budget $140 million Recidivism rate: 43% (VT. DOC facts and figures FY2012) Total DOC population: 10,743 Total cost per inmate per citizen: $192 Total misdemeanor convictions: 9,058 More than 40% of first time entrants into DOC are under 25 • 74.6% of female inmates receive mental health services DEFINING THE PROBLEM • Cost of one year in prison: $58,110 • Total expenditures for in state prison costs: $91,929,918 • Total expenditures for out of state prison costs: $13,920,906 • Vermont spends $114 million on jail. Is this a good use of criminal justice dollars? • Can we do better? Can we do something different? RICC Necessary components to be successful: 1. Use science to determine eligibility. 2. Have a clear incentive for participation. 3. Consistent compliance monitoring. 4. Link to community-based partners. Evidence-Based Methodology ORAS: Ohio Risk Assessment System - Evaluates level of risk for recidivating by identifying dynamic risk factors to guide and prioritize appropriate and effective programmatic intervention - Criminogenic factors include: Criminal history; education; employment; family & social support; neighborhood problems; substance abuse; peer associations; criminal attitudes and behavioral patterns Evidence-Based Methodology Program staff incorporate Motivational Interviewing where possible when enrolling individuals into the program. Motivational Interviewing and Thinking for Change are both utilized in RICC/Burlington Community Justice Center’s Retail Theft Awareness and Prevention Class. Evidence-Based Methodology Program partners all employ promising practices or evidence-based interventions OR are themselves evidence-based programs. For example: - Turning Point Center’s Recovery Coaching is based on Making Alcoholics Anonymous Easier. - Lund, HowardCenter, and Spectrum all utilize Motivational Interviewing. Incentive Important question to consider before starting program: What motivation will someone have to complete a program that requires them to accept responsibility and address the risk factors in their lives? Incentive • RICC is optional and voluntary. Someone can choose to still go through the traditional criminal justice system. • Carrot/Stick approach: • Carrots: – 90 days = shorter process than going through courts – Avoid fees, Prosecution, Lengthy Court Process, Charge, Conviction, Corrections etc. • Stick: Prosecution of their case will happen if they’re not compliant with their contract. Community Partnership “This program represents a philosophical change – that Community Justice Centers and social service providers are equal partners in crime prevention.” TJ Donovan Community Partnership • Community Justice Centers (Burlington, Essex, S. Burlington, Williston, & Winooski) and Chittenden County-based Reparative Boards • Lund • Spectrum Youth Services • HowardCenter • Mercy Connections • Turning Point Center • VT Works for Women • Private Substance Abuse Counselors Community Partnership Burlington Community Justice Center: close working partner with RICC -- Restorative Justice Panels -- Retail Theft Awareness and Prevention Class -- Assists with ORAS screening -- Consultant role -- Advisory Committee For questions about the BCJC’s role with RICC, please contact Karen Vastine: 802-865-7185 Community Partnership Community Justice Centers – continued -- Individuals meet with members of the community and the victim at their restorative justice panel meeting -- Collaboratively designed restorative contract -- Can assist with restitution collection -- Staff and panel provides ‘case-management’ to assist with successful completion of program -- Constant two-way communication vis-à-vis updates on cases etc. Community Partnership Lund Family Services, Spectrum Youth & Family Services and HowardCenter -- Depending on demographics, individuals can be served by these programs for mental health and substance abuse assessment and counseling. Community Partnership Turning Point Center - Recovery Coaches assist people in accessing housing, job training, community services, and networks of community support. - Peer Support - Volunteering - Additional Programing in a safe, sober environment Community Partnership Mercy Connections -- Programs, predominantly for women, that nurture self sufficiency through education, mentoring and community involvement. -- Getting Ahead in a Just-Gettin’-By World: Aha! Process Inc Compliance • Dedicated staff person to monitor compliance: appointment reminders, contract check-ins, works with community partners. • Non compliance with recommended plan results in Flash Cite i.e. cited into court on the following Tuesday or Thursday. • Simultaneous Citation/Contract End Date • Failures are tracked by SA office. Key Components 1. Screening appropriate pre-charge cases 2. Determine risk/needs by employing Ohio Risk Assessment System tool (ORAS) . 3. Divert case by linking individual to the appropriate community based organization. 4. Compliance: 90 day threshold 5. Completion-no charge filed 6. Failure-flash cite to court for following Tues or Thurs RICC Present & Future DOES RICC WORK? • What was the post-program behavior of program participants? • Outcome Evaluation – Conducted by Vermont Center for Justice Research 700 participants September of 2010 to December of 2012. – Success = No conviction for any criminal offense THE RESULTS Percentage of Participants Who Remained Conviction Free 100% 80% 93% 75% 60% 40% Completed RICC 20% Failed to Complete 0% Completed RICC Failed to Complete NUMBER OF CRIMES FOR WHICH RECIDIVISTS WERE CONVICTED # of Reconvictions Per 100 Recidivists 60 50 48 40 30 Completed RICC 20 10 Failed to Complete 15 0 Completed RICC Failed to Complete HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THE RESULTS? Completed RICC Failed to Complete NO MEASURABLE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE GROUPS: THE PROGRAM PROBABLY MADE THE DIFFERENCE READ THE FULL REPORT WWW. VCJR. ORG HOW DO WE MEASURE SUCCESS? • Duty of prosecutors is to keep our communities safe. To do justice. • Are we enhancing public safety by addressing the root causes of criminal behavior? • Are we reducing recidivism? • What is the proper measure for public safety? • Are we fulfilling our duty? Opportunities for Improvement • • • • Increasing Transparency Creating an active advisory committee Increasing communication Using a more sophisticated database to track client details.