Apr 29, 2011
We had a tyre slashed on the car last November. Ours was one of 67 or so tyres slashed on about 52 cars, all done by a group of kids but one lad in particular did the bulk of them. Despite a big effort by the police the main culprit wasn't prosecuted by the CPS because "there was insufficient evidence to ensure a conviction".
A few weeks ago I was asked by the local CBM if I'd be interested in this Restorative Justice thing for one of the lads involved - who admitted he might have done one or two tyres but again wasn't to be prosecuted. I invited the CBM round to discuss whether I wanted to be involved or not. It seems that even though the lad was never charged he wants to make an effort to turn his life around and had asked for the RJ thing, although I suspect he'd been talked into it by his youth worker or the plod. Apparently with support from his family and his own efforts he's making good progress and hasn't been in bother since the night of the short knives.
So, if I can help the lad should I be bothered? Well I was and volunteered myself and this afternoon popped along to the Youth Offending offices with another neighbour to confront the lad. Now he's not the sharpest tool in the box but he was clearly uncomfortable and embarrassed (as was his dad) and as our circumstances were, shall we say difficult at the time of the incident I was able to lay things on quite thick and he did quite a bit of squirming. His apology seemed heartfelt (although I doubt he was responsible for doing our car) and I think that at 15 years of age he's hopefully going to get himself on a better path in life.
So, did I do the right thing? Should I have bothered with a 15 year old scrote or like most of the 50 or so people affected 'been too busy'? What would you have done given the opportunity and is RJ a good or bad thing? I know that KorkyKat has a low opinion of RJ but what about the rest of you?