Remedi 20th Anniversary: Case Study 23

Case Study – Burglary

Background: The offender burgled the victim’s house, taking the keys to the car and stealing it whilst locking the victim in her home in the process. The offender was then involved in a high speed car chase with the police which ended at a local Airport on the runway.

Victim: The victim was initially very adamant that she wasn’t much affected but throughout our conversation she advised that she suffers from anxiety and her medication had to be increased because of this incident. She now has trouble sleeping and is always listening out for noises which would be people breaking in. The victim was sure that she did not want to meet the offender or write to him but would receive a letter from him to her.

Offender: I met the offender in prison and he advised that at the time of the offence he was suffering from a mental breakdown. He was homeless and awaiting an appointment with a housing association when he decided to get a taxi to his mums house (parents live a few doors down from victim) When he arrived in the taxi he got out near the victims address and said that at the time he thought that this was his new property from the housing association and that the car was his also. He went into the house which was unlocked and took the keys believing he was going on holiday and needed to go to the airport in the car.

Process – Indirect letter: The offender wrote a very in depth letter about his mental state at the time of the offence and apologised profusely throughout. He also offered to repay the victim in any way that he could in regards to DIY or gardening or odd jobs etc. He expressed that he would have liked to meet the victim in person so that he could explain himself more easily and so that she could see that he meant his apology. He also added that should he see her in the street near his parents then he will in no way try to make contact with her but if she wishes to he would like the opportunity to speak to her if she approaches her. The victim received and read the letter but asked me to dispose of it as she did not want to keep it and that she also did not want to reply.

Feedback: In discussion about the letter the victim advised that she accepts his explanation and is glad to have read it but that she feels no different about the offence and that she is still very bitter. In regards to seeing the offender upon his release she advised she will not acknowledge him. She praised the process and the work that Remedi does but doesn’t feel it has made any difference to her. The offender was extremely happy with the process and advised the only thing that would have raised his satisfaction was if he was able to meet the victim face to face which she declined. He is happy that he got to put across his side and apologise to the victim.