Felony mediation provides an out-of-court and timely procedure to process felony cases through our judicial system. Mediation allows for a facilitated conversation between the prosecutor and the defendant regarding the defendant’s case. The process is voluntary and provides cost-effective justice.
A mediator convenes a one-hour conference with the defendant, his attorney, and the prosecutor on a carefully selected case at the local courthouse. Mediators are Senior Status Judges who are also trained and experienced in mediation and Kentucky criminal law.
The mediation session lasts one to two hours in duration depending upon the number of defendant’s and the issues involved.
Who benefits from felony mediation, and what are the benefits?
- Court: docket control
- Commonwealth Attorney: case management
- Defendant: speedy access to justice; voluntary; chance to be heard by judge without being judged; fair agreements
- Public Advocate: Case management
- Crime Victims: may participate in carefully selected cases; opportunity to confront offender in an informal yet safe environment
- Taxpayer: may reduce the cost of incarceration
- Jail: reduces risks associated with overcrowded jails
Case Referral and Scheduling
Referral procedures work with each county’s unique structure. Once a date has been selected for a criminal mediation blitz, cases may be considered for the mediation docket. Referrals are made by the presiding judge, the Commonwealth Attorney, and defense attorneys. However, all referrals are approved by the Judge.