Radio 4 will broadcast “The Punch”, a programme featuring Restorative Justice, at 13:45 – 14:00 from Monday 20 to Friday 25 July 2020. It will then be available on BBC Sounds. Find all episodes at https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000l0jr/episodes/guide.
Aged 18, Jacob Dunne threw a single punch in a drunken brawl outside a pub in Nottingham. His victim, James Hodgkinson, died in hospital nine days later and Jacob was convicted of manslaughter.
Now 27, Jacob has a young family and has just completed a degree, but it was only after taking part in restorative justice that he began to turn his life around. Meeting face-to-face with James’ parents had a profound impact on both Jacob and the Hodgkinsons, and the resulting relationship has changed Jacob’s life in unexpected ways.
With his heart set on a career helping others, Jacob wants to understand his own transformation from angry teenager to a responsible father and respected member of the community. He has travelled the country giving speeches and workshops to students, prisoners, prison officers, hospital staff, educators and young offenders. In February, he gave the keynote speech at a graduation ceremony for trainee prison officers.
In this five part series, he retraces the key moments in his life since he threw the punch. It isn’t a straightforward story of rehabilitation but a complicated, often painful journey. Recording himself at home during lockdown, Jacob makes contact with his former parole officer, a prison officer, mentors, and others who have benefited from similar face-to-face confrontations.
In this first episode, he revisits the worst night of his life, with the victim’s parents Joan and David.
Produced by Kim Normanton and Victoria Ferran
A Just Radio production for BBC Radio 4