Kane County State’s Attorney Studying County Diversion Program
Joe McMahon, Kane County State’s Attorney, believes in the power of the diversion programs available for criminals. Currently, that belief is based on anecdotal evidence and internal review, so McMahon believes that further research is needed to test the short and long-term effects of diversion programs. Diversion programs are growing in popularity as a means of punishment or those arrested for criminal activity. The State’s Attorney’s Office will have some real numbers at the beginning of next year, based on research conducted in a partnership with the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority and Aurora University. The research has specifically focused on the recidivism rate among the participants in Kane County’s diversion program. Diversion programs have been recommended as a punishment alternative for nonviolent felony first-time offenders. Some of the crimes applicable for diversion are deceptive practices, credit card fraud, forgery, retail theft, and burglary. A total of 1,071 individuals participated in the program between 2005 and 2010. The researchers used a random sample of 317 individuals who completed a diversion program. This study evaluates the performance of individual participants in the program as well as the behavior of those individuals in the three years after their completion. Convictions are a primary method of measurement. The goal of the study is to present a comprehensive overview of how the diversion programs have worked and where they can be improved. The findings are expected to support the use of diversion programs, but they will also be used to identify weaknesses in existing structures. For example, McMahon believes that the results may indicate a need for increased reliance on community service or more intensive counseling services. If you or someone you know has been arrested for a crime in Illinois, alternatives like diversion programs may be an option for you to complete your punishment. As an accused criminal in Kane County, DuPage County, or Will County, you need to identify an attorney who will take your case seriously. Reach out to the offices of a prominent Illinois criminal law attorney today.