Case Study: Disappearing TV 

Note: Names have been changed to protect the identities of the participants.


Tom, an LMU student, reported to LMU Campus Safety Services that his TV had been stolen from the second floor lounge in his residence hall. Tom was using the TV with friends and left it with one of his friends who he thought was going to be in the room the remainder of the day, but his friend left. Campus Safety Services reviewed video camera footage and was able to capture an image of the student who took the TV from the lounge.

Campus Safety Services contacted the Resident Director of the residence hall for assistance with identifying the student. The Resident Director identified James as the student who had taken the TV. When Campus Safety Services followed up with James regarding the incident, he took responsibility and returned the TV to Campus Safety Services who returned it to Tom. The incident was forwarded to the Office of Student Conduct & Community Responsibility (OSCCR), at which point it was determined the case was eligible for a Restorative Justice Conference.


A Restorative Justice Conference is convened by a multi-partial facilitator where everyone involved in the incident is given the opportunity to be heard. The process gives everyone involved a chance to have a face-to face conversation to determine what needs to be done to help resolve the matter and make sure it doesn’t happen again. The purpose of the conference is to hear:

  1. What Happened
  2. How Everyone Has Been Affected
  3. What Can Be Done to Repair the Harm

James, Tom, and the Resident Director agreed to participate in the Restorative Justice Conference. As the story unfolded, the parties learned a number of facts, including:

  • James apologized for taking Tom’s TV
  • James received outreach from the Office of Student Conduct & Community Responsibility
  • James reflected more about who was affected by his actions after the outreach
  • Tom’s parents were upset when they found out about the TV being gone
  • Tom couldn’t play video games with his friends without the TV
  • The Resident Director cared about the students and wanted to support this being resolved
  • James recognized the effect this incident had on other people
  • James offered to speak to Tom’s parents


To repair the harm, James wrote a letter to Tom’s parents to take responsibility for the situation and explain what happened. James agreed to create a poster in consultation with his Resident Advisor about media room expectations which he would send to his Resident Director to be printed and posted.