On October 18th, one of the pilot cases for peacemaking circles made a court appearance following his successful completion of the process. His felony case was entirely dismissed. Everyone – including the prosecutor, the probation counselor, the defense attorney, and members of the Peacemaking Coordinating Team – offered a litany of praise for a young man who devoted over two years of his life to healing and accountability for his actions. The moment was so profound, the judge was compelled to step off the bench and offer a hug. That’s certainly a different – and welcome – courtroom outcome. We are moved and excited by yet another example of the transformative power of native-inspired restorative justice peacemaking circles.

Peace and love,

Joe Cotton

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