Canyon County, in collaboration with Idaho’s Third Judicial District, is implementing a Juvenile Drug Court starting Wednesday, Nov. 28.
Canyon County Juvenile Drug Court is a court-supervised, comprehensive outpatient treatment program for juvenile offenders who are chemically dependent on drugs.
The voluntary program is designed to help juvenile defendants achieve total abstinence from drugs and live more satisfying lives by contributing to their communities in a positive way.
Under the leadership of Magistrate Judge Onanubosi, court officials say this non-traditional approach is designed to provide immediate intervention and treatment for high risk/high need juveniles, interrupting the cycle of substance abuse and delinquent behavior.
This is accomplished, they said, by creating more opportunities for intervention in health care and expanding support using all justice system resources.
According to a press release issued this week, one major difference from the adult treatment model is the imperative need for families to engage in the process, as well.
The Problem Solving Court provides positive feedback and incentives for “right decisions,” as well as graduated sanctions as the juvenile becomes habitual and repetitive with those healthy choices.
The balanced program combines all the resources of the legal process and juvenile justice, in collaboration with community treatment providers and other rehabilitation resources like vocational training, education and Health and Welfare.
Juvenile offenders accepted in Juvenile Drug Court are required to participate in early, continuous and intensive court-monitored treatment that includes frequent court appearances, random drug testing and counseling. This approach is designed to motivate participants to finish their mandatory treatment, maintain school or employment, and complete community service and other court-ordered conditions.
A juvenile who enters the Drug Court program waives the right to a trial and pleads true to the current, underlying charge. If the juvenile successfully completes or “graduates” the program, charges will be dismissed. If the juvenile does not complete the program, the judge will review the associated reports and recommendations and continue with sentencing as if the juvenile was never admitted to drug court.
For more information, contact Canyon County Juvenile Court Coordinator Mike Davidson at 454-7330.