YEARS SAVED THROUGH PARTICIPATORY DEFENSE ACTIONS
I’ve praised Participatory Defense before. It’s a community-based approach to criminal-defense that wraps a wider story and longer narrative arcs around a defendant. Friends and family work with public defenders to bring more to the case and to the court.
Participatory Defense was pioneered by Silicon Valley DeBug. It is carried out by the Albert Cobarrubias Justice Project (ACJP). Listen to Raj Jayadev speak here for 5-minutes about Participatory Defense‘s positive effects.
Jayadev recounts the story of Carnell who was facing a 5-year term for a low level drug offense. He said he was afraid of missing his daughters lives, of not being their for them. The gave Carnell a camera and he documented his life, taking his girls to school, to volleyball practice, making them meals at home.
The photographs were presented in court and instead of a custodial sentence, Carnell received a 6-month out patient drug treatment program, the help he’d sought all along!
So far, ACJP has helped divert clients from a cumulative 1,862 years of incarceration.