Pathfinder Deferred Charge Scheme
What is the Pathfinder Scheme?
Pathfinder is a programme which aims to reduce the number of victims of crime by reducing reoffending, which will also make all our communities safer places to live and work. People are often motivated to commit crime due to underlying issues in their lives – these could include drug or alcohol misuse, mental and physical health issues, housing or homelessness, or problems to do with money or relationships.
Pathfinder seeks to identify and tackle the root causes of offending by providing brief interventions and support at the first contact with the criminal justice system. A referral to the scheme will only be made with the consent of the victim and there is a strong focus on restorative justice.
Pathfinder on Spotlight
How does it work?
Pathfinder offers eligible offenders, initially identified in custody suites, the opportunity to engage in a 4-month long contract as an alternative to prosecution. It is only available to those that would have received an out of court disposal (caution) as an outcome. It is not a soft option but is there to challenge and change behaviour and to turn people around from further offending.
There are a number of eligibility criteria which have to be met:
- The victim consents to the scheme being offered – they will also be asked whether they want to be involved in a restorative justice intervention
- The participant consents to referral to the scheme
- The offence is suitable for an out of court disposal
- The participant is over 18 and lives in Devon/Cornwall
- The offence was committed in Devon or Cornwall
- The participant will usually be a first time offender
What the keyworkers do?
Pathfinder Keyworkers will be based in custody suites across Devon and Cornwall. They will work with offenders over the 4 month period to help them make positive changes so that they do not reoffend again. They will agree a contract that is based on an in-depth assessment of needs and will consist of a number of requirements:
- Not to reoffend during the period of the contract
- Participate in a Restorative Justice/Community Resolution Intervention (if appropriate)
- Attend appointments/brief interventions on pathway needs
- Carry out voluntary or community work for 18-36 hours
If the contract is successfully completed and the participant does not reoffend then no further action will be taken. If they reoffend or fail to complete the contract they will be charged and prosecuted.
How do I find out more?
For more information email The Deferred Charge Scheme Manager