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Community Court Session in Hartford
Fifth Anniversary Celebration

By Michael Musczynski

Community Court Fifth AnniversaryState and local officials gathered on Monday, November 10, 2003, to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Community Court Session in Hartford.

Community Court was established in 1998 to address the "quality of life crimes" that have contributed to the corrosion of our communities. The Hartford Community Court is committed to restorative justice, for both the community and the defendant. This is accomplished through an in-house social services team that responds to the needs of the defendant and a community service program that gives back to the community.

The Honorable Jorge A. Simón, Presiding Judge of Community Court, gave opening remarks and introduced the several dignitaries who were present -- Chief Court Administrator Judge Joseph H. Pellegrino; Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez; Hartford City Manager Lee Erdmann; and Hartford Assistant Police Chief Kevin S. Jones. Each speaker noted the success of Community Court, and what is has meant for both the state and the city.Community Court Fifth Anniversary

"Who benefits from all of this? Everybody," Judge Pellegrino told the audience. "The defendant benefits because of the effort to address the problems behind the behavior. The City benefits because of the service that is given back. The State benefits because Community Court eases the pressure on GA-14. And as it should be, the ultimate beneficiaries are all of the citizens within the Hartford Judicial District."

Judge Simón also gave special recognition to members of the staff who have served at the Community Court since its opening in 1998. The honorees also received plaques.

Among the first of its kind in the nation, the Hartford Community Community Court Fifth AnniversaryCourt has handled more than 38,000 cases since it opened. The total number of community service hours performed is 151,065, and 11,537 human services referrals have been issued. An additional 1,956 cases have been referred to mediation.


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