Kentucky Court of Justice
Carter County Drug Court program to celebrate National Drug Court Month with graduation May 14 in Grayson
FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The Carter County Drug Court program will celebrate National Drug Court Month with a graduation ceremony for four participants who have successfully completed the program. The event is open to the public and will take place at 6:30 p.m. EDT Tuesday, May 14, at the Carter County Courthouse. The courthouse is located at 120 E. Main St. in Grayson.
The National Association of Drug Court Professionals hosts National Drug Court Month each May to highlight the impact of drug court programs across the nation. This year’s theme is Drug Courts: A Proven Budget Solution.
Circuit Court Judge Rebecca K. Phillips will preside over the graduation ceremony. Judge Phillips volunteers her time to conduct proceedings for the Drug Court programs that serve Carter, Elliott and Morgan counties, the three counties in her judicial circuit.
In addition to the public, invitees to the graduation ceremony include law enforcement representatives, elected officials, attorneys and representatives of drug treatment facilities.
The Carter County Drug Court program has 32 participants not including the individuals who are scheduled to graduate May 14. Seventeen participants have graduated from the program since it began in July 2007. Billy Ousley is the recovery coordinator and Jessica Newman is the case specialist for the program.
About Kentucky Drug Court
Kentucky Drug Court is administered through the Administrative Office of the Courts in Frankfort, which oversees 55 adult programs that serve 115 counties. Drug Court’s mission is to provide court-supervised treatment as an alternative to incarceration. The program’s success can be measured in the number of lives changed and the cost savings to Kentucky taxpayers. For every $1 spent on Drug Court graduates, the state saves $2.72 on what it would have spent on incarcerating these individuals.
The program has helped reduce illicit drug use and related criminal activity and lowered rearrest, reconviction and reincarceration rates. It has increased payments of delinquent child support and improved employment rates. As of June 30, 2012, 5,370 individuals had graduated from Drug Court programs statewide and participants had paid $3.5 million in child support and $3.9 million in court obligations, including restitution and fines.
Drug Court coordinates the efforts of the judiciary, prosecution, defense bar, probation, law enforcement, mental health, social services and treatment communities to actively intervene and break the cycle of substance abuse, addiction and crime. The program consists of three phases that last at least one year and are followed by aftercare. Drug Court staff and participants work together to develop individual program plans with specific responsibilities and goals with timetables. Plans include group, family and individual counseling; frequent and random urine testing; education and vocational training; scheduled payments of restitution, child support and court fees; and health and community activities. Participants report directly to their Drug Court judge, who rewards progress and sanctions noncompliance.
When participants successfully complete the program, charges may be dismissed through diversion, or conditional discharge may be granted through probation. Judges who participate in Drug Court volunteer their time to the program.
Administrative Office of the Courts
The AOC is the operations arm for the state court system and supports the activities of nearly 3,300 court system employees and 403 elected justices, judges and circuit court clerks. As the fiscal agent for the state court system, the AOC also executes the Judicial Branch budget.