A Community Resolution Notice can be issued to someone 10 years or over for a specified range of offences.
Community Resolution was introduced in Northern Ireland on 30th June 2016.
It provides a quicker, more victim tailored method of dealing with specific offences than a formal prosecution where a comparatively minor crime has been committed and an agreement (resolution) is reached regarding how the offender can make good the loss, damage or harm caused to the victim.
The aims of Community Resolution are to:-
*Improve the involvement and quality of service provided to victims by taking account of their views where reasonable and proportionate in the resolution;
*Increase victim satisfaction in policing and criminal justice by providing a comparatively prompt and tailored resolution;
*Provide a proportionate justice disposal for offenders with little or no previous offending history, to reduce the impact on their lives compared to other non-court disposals and encourages them to change their behaviour and not re-offend,&;
*Provide officers with a proportionate disposal for offences which are comparatively less serious.
Do I need to provide a statement to Police?
You may be required to provide a statement of complaint if the matter cannot be progressed by way of Community Resolution, for example if a suitable resolution cannot be agreed upon and a decision is made to progress the matter through the Court then a statement will be required.
What if I disagree with Police and wish to attend Court rather than have the matter progressed by way of Community Resolution?
The attending officer will explain the process and their rationale for believing the matter could be progressed by a particular disposal method however if you still disagree you can discuss this with the officer and give your reasoning behind wishing to attend court. Depending on the circumstances the officer may still progress the matter by way of Community Resolution but will fully explain why this is the most appropriate method of disposal.
What if I do not feel that the resolution has been completed properly?
Police cannot ensure any work is carried out to a specific standard however they will use their professional judgement to determine whether any work has been carried out to a reasonable standard. A resolution is a voluntary agreement by the offender and if it is not completed to a reasonable standard that an average person would expect then Police may consider an alternative disposal.
I do not feel I should have been given a community resolution – what should I do?
Police will only issue a Community Resolution Notice where you have made a clear and reliable admission to the offence and sign a declaration on the Notice which commences with the words; “I admit I am guilty of this offence.” However if you are unhappy about the process and the issuing officer cannot resolve it, you can either ask the issuing officer to get their supervisor to contact you, call 101 or write to the District Commander. If you wish to make a complaint about an individual officer you can contact the Police Ombudsman’s Office on 02890 828600.
I do not agree with the Resolution, what can I do?
Police will only issue a Community Resolution when a suitable resolution is agreed with you and you agree to sign the Community Resolution Notice admitting the offence and agreement to complete the resolution the issuing officer has decided is appropriate to make good the harm, damage or loss caused. If you subsequently disagree or cannot complete the resolution for any reason you must inform the issuing officer who will consider an alternative method of dealing with the crime which may include the matter being referred for prosecution through the courts.
I have been issued with a Community Resolution Notice, does this mean I have a Criminal Record?
No - Community Resolution does not result in a criminal conviction and is not routinely disclosed. However you will be recorded as being responsible for committing this crime and this is available for information sharing purposes where relevant and appropriate. It may be subject to disclosure as part of an enhanced criminal record check or security clearance under prescribed conditions and Police will hold a record of all Community Resolutions.
I have been issued with a Community Resolution Notice and Police asked if I would agree to provide equality information such as my gender and community background - why did Police do this and what happens to my information?
This information is purely to assist the PSNI monitor any adverse differential impact our policies might have on any individuals based in compliance with our responsibilities under section 75 Northern Ireland Act 1998.
No-one is obliged to provide this information if they don’t want to and all data storage, processing and sharing will be in compliance with the Data Protection Act 2018. Any information provided is held securely by the PSNI. Police may share this data in a redacted form with other Criminal Justice Partners to allow analysis of any equality impacts. This will include the equality monitoring details you provide matched against a unique reference number and will not include your name or address. Data will only be published in anonymous format and in reference to groups of people, not individuals. No one would be able to identify you from any published data.