PSU Shenango Professors to Examine County Justice System

SHARON, Pa. – A grant from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency will support a collaboration involving Penn State Shenango faculty that examines Mercer County’s criminal justice and behavioral health needs.

The $41,106 grant will support, in part, “the collection and analysis of data of the Mercer County criminal justice system” by Penn State Shenango professors Steven Brewer and Roxanne Atterholt. The two will work alongside the Criminal Justice Advisory Board of Mercer County’s Juvenile Probations Office.

Brewer and Atterholt have worked to the Behavioral Health Commission, Mercer County 911, Mercer County Jail and the Board of Probabtion and Parole to collect the data, which will be used to complete a comprehensive report and develop intervention programs.

“We look forward to being able to provide the necessary information to help them continue to develop their strategic plan. We hope this project will ultimately enhance local law enforcement and its ability to respond to situations involving individuals who may suffer from a mental illness,” Brewer said in a release. “Working in partnership with the [advisory board] and [Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency] to collect and examine crime data sounded extremely interesting to both Roxanne and me.”

Recently, the campus hosted 15 law enforcement officers from western Pennsylvania departments, Mercer County Jail and the state Board of Probation Parole as part of a weeklong training seminar funded by the crime commission.

“The Mercer County Criminal Justice Advisory Board appreciates the opportunity to collaborate with Penn State Shenango on this important initiative that will culminate in the development of our Criminal Justice Advisory Board strategic plan,” said Mark Benedetto, chairman of the advisory board.

Copyright 2023 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.