Kentucky Court of Justice
Kentucky Judge David A. Tapp receives national Drug Court award
|Judge David A. Tapp interviews Congressman Hal Rogers about Drug Court programs for All Rise magazine. Judge Tapp received the All Rise award from the National Association of Drug Court Professionals for his interview with the congressman. Photo credit: NADCP|
WASHINGTON, DC -- Kentucky Drug Court Judge David A. Tapp, who serves Lincoln, Pulaski and Rockcastle counties, has been awarded with the prestigious National Association of Drug Court Professionals ‘All Rise’ award during a star-studded conference in Washington, DC.
The National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) Annual Training Conference is considered the world’s largest on substance abuse and the criminal justice system. This year’s event took place from July 17-20 and brought nearly 4,000 state and federal justice leaders, celebrities, judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, clinicians, police and probation officers, military veterans, business owners, Drug Court graduates and their family members to the nation’s capital.
Judge Tapp was recognized along with actors Martin Sheen, Matthew Perry and Harry Lennix during the closing ceremony of the conference on July 20. Judge Tapp was honored for his role in securing and conducting an interview with Congressman Hal Rogers (R-KY), Chairman of Appropriations in the U.S. House of Representatives, last December for NADCP’s All Rise Magazine. The interview was so successful that it was featured as the cover story of the quarterly.
During the interview, Judge Tapp asked Congressman Rogers if he felt it was important to further expand Drug Courts to reach more individuals. Congressman Rogers responded, “Yes, I'd like to see Drug Courts available everywhere. I've seen how effective they are. We did not have Drug Courts in my district and now that we have them and I've seen the difference that they can bring.”
“Judge Tapp is an outstanding ambassador for Drug Courts both in Kentucky and around the world,” said NADCP Director of Communications Chris Deutsch. “His work in Drug Court has affected countless lives and his interview with Congressman Rogers’ will be critical to helping Drug Courts maintain funding in the coming budget cycle. It is an honor for NADCP to present Judge Tapp with this award.”
“I do Drug Court for the small moments,” said Judge Tapp upon receiving the award. “When you look at an offender who has struggled…and at some point during the process that small moment comes where you look at them and you see a new confidence. You see a gleam in their eye that wasn’t there before, and you know that they get it. That’s why I do Drug Court.” Judge Tapp’s remarks brought nearly 3,700 attendees to their feet.
Judge Tapp, who is a Circuit Court judge, has presided over Drug Court since 2005. Circuit Court Judge Jeffrey T. Burdette also serves as a Drug Court judge for Lincoln, Pulaski and Rockcastle counties. The judges volunteer their time to preside over Drug Court. This Drug Court, like the nearly 2,700 in existence nationwide, serve seriously drug-addicted individuals through intense treatment and supervision. Nationally, Drug Courts have been proven to significantly reduce drug abuse crime and recidivism while saving money.
“Drug Courts are one example of successful efforts made by criminal justice professionals to rehabilitate high-risk offenders,” Judge Tapp said. “I take great pride in these efforts and applaud the hard work and dedication of all Drug Court staff members. These people volunteer their time and effort to do good deeds for thousands of people within the commonwealth annually and they get almost no recognition for these efforts. They deserve a great amount of credit.”
Watch Judge Tapp give his acceptance speech.
Check out Judge Tapp's interview with Congressman Rogers.
About National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP)
Drug Courts combine rigorous drug treatment and accountability to compel and support drug-using offenders to change their lives. After 22 years of innovation, there are now over 2,500 Drug Courts located in all 50 states. Since 1994 the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP), a non-profit organization 501 (c) (3) representing over 27,000 multi-disciplinary justice professionals and community leaders, has worked tirelessly at the national, state and local level to create and enhance Drug Courts. NADCP is now recognized as the experts in the field of addiction and the criminal justice system. For more information, visit www.AllRise.org.
Kentucky Drug Court
Drug Court is proving to be a positive solution to a serious social problem. The success of Drug Court can be measured in the number of lives changed and the cost savings to Kentucky taxpayers. The program has had a significant impact on reducing rearrest, reconviction and reincarceration rates. The program has resulted in increased payment of delinquent child support and improved employment rates. For every $1 spent on Drug Court graduates, the state saves $2.72 on what it would have spent on incarcerating these individuals.
The mission is to provide a court-supervised treatment alternative that stops illicit drug use and related criminal activity and promotes a positive life change through substance abuse education and treatment.
How Kentucky Drug Court Works
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 a total of 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. Most of the program’s funding comes from state funds approved through the Kentucky General Assembly.
Learn more about Kentucky Drug Court.