Juvenile Review Board (JRB)

Overview:
The Stamford Juvenile Review Board (JRB) helps first-time youth offenders accused of a non-violent misdemeanor offense keep their records clean by diverting them from the justice system, providing them with supportive case management services, and connecting them to positive community activities. The JRB is based on the balanced and restorative justice philosophy, which focuses on accountability and appropriate consequences, repairing harm, and restoring the relationship between the victim and the offender. The JRB is staffed by a Domus employee based at the Stamford Police Department.

The Process:
Once a youth (under age 18) commits a crime and is arrested, s/he can be referred to the JRB by the Stamford Police Department Youth Bureau. The youth and his/her parent(s) meets with a Domus JRB staff member. If the youth expresses interest in the program, s/he would agree to have his/her case reviewed by the board.

A youth hears the board’s recommendation, which outlines what they recommends for the youth, then determines if s/he wishes to participate. If the youth declines, s/he is referred to Juvenile Court. If the youth decides to participate in the JRB, the youth and parent(s) sign a contract, which outlines diversions tailored to each specific youth to support him/her in getting back on track. Diversions can include

  • Community service
  • Letters of apology
  • Mental health services
  • Substance abuse services
  • Tutoring
  • Mentoring
  • Mediation
  • Restitution
  • Pro-social activity
  • Improve grades and/or attendance
  • Essays related to the reason for arrest

A youth is typically in the program for three to six months. During that time, the staff member hears from the youth weekly, by phone, email, or visits to track her/his progress toward completion of the program.

Results:
The typical juvenile offender recidivism rate is 50%; average for youth seen by a JRB is 25%; the Domus/Stamford JRB has run between 9% and 13% the past few years.

History:
The JRB started in 2006 as a result of the murder of a Stamford youth. Youth violence spiked because of that tragedy, and new avenues were sought to deal with the increase in juvenile offenders so the City could identify youth potentially or already involved in violence to prevent future violence and to prevent these offenses from creating a permanent record.

Location:
Stamford Police Department
805 Bedford Street
Stamford, CT 06902

Hours of Operation:
varies–as needed

Staff:
Jeremy Kosbob – Director of the JRB

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