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​Drug Court 

 

MCL 600.1060(c) defines drug treatment courts as ". . . a court supervised treatment program for individuals who abuse or are dependent upon any controlled substance or alcohol." These courts are specially designed to reduce recidivism and substance abuse among nonviolent substance-abusing offenders and to increase the offenders' likelihood of successful habilitation through early, continuous, and intense judicially- supervised treatment, mandatory periodic drug testing, and use of appropriate sanctions.​

 
Drug treatment courts evolved to address the revolving-door cycle in which drug and alcohol offenders moved in and out of the justice system. Drug treatment courts treat addiction as a complex disease and provide a comprehensive, sustained continuum of therapeutic interventions, treatment, and other services to increase a participant's periods of abstinence and reduce the rate of relapse, re-arrest, and incarceration.
 
Michigan has been a pioneer in the drug treatment court movement. There are currently 84 drug treatment courts in Michigan, consisting of 32 adult dru​​g courts, 23 DWI courts, 15 juvenile drug courts, 11 family dependency courts, and 3 tribal healing-to-wellness courts. Michigan's drug treatment courts operate in 40 counties; however, the three tribal drug courts have special jurisdictions.

 

Adult Drug Treatment Court

Adult drug treatment court has a specially designed court calendar or docket, the purpose of which is to achieve a reduction in recidivism and substance abuse among nonviolent substance abusing offenders and to increase the offender's likelihood of successful habitation. Interventions include early, continuous, and intense judicially-supervised treatment, mandatory periodic drug testing, community supervision, and use of appropriate sanctions, incentives, and rehabilitation services (Bureau of Justice Assistance, 2005.) [Huddleston & Marlowe, National Drug Court Institute and United States Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance, Painting the Current Picture: A National Report on Drug Courts and Other Problem-Solving Court Programs in the United States (July 2011, p 43).]

 

DWI Court

DWI court has a post-conviction court docket dedicated to changing the behavior of the alcohol- or drug-dependent repeat offender or high-BAC offender arrested for driving while impaired (DWI). The goal of the DWI court is to protect public safety, while addressing the root causes of impaired driving. DWI court utilizes a team of criminal justice professionals (including prosecutors, defense attorneys, probation officers, and law enforcement), along with substance abuse treatment professionals to systematically change participate behavior. Like drug courts, DWI courts involve extensive interaction between the judge and the offenders to hold the offenders accountable for their compliance with court, supervision, and treatment conditions (Huddleston, et al., 2004). [Huddleston & Marlowe, National Drug Court Institute and United States Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance, Painting the Current Picture: A National Report on Drug Courts and Other Problem-Solving Court Programs in the United States (July 2011, p 44).]

 

Family Dependency Treatment Court

Family dependency treatment court has a juvenile or family court docket for cases of child abuse or neglect in which parental substance abuse is a contributing factor. Judges, attorneys, child protection services, and treatment personnel unite with the goal of providing safe, nurturing, and permanent homes for children, while simultaneously providing parents with the necessary support and services they need to become drug and alcohol abstinent. Family dependency treatment court aids parents or guardians in regaining control of their lives and promotes long-term stabilized recovery to enhance the possibility of family reunification within mandatory legal time frames (Huddleston, et a., 2005). [Huddleston & Marlowe, National Drug Court Institute and United States Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance, Painting the Current Picture: A National Report on Drug Courts and Other Problem-Solving Court Programs in the United States (July 2011, p 44).]

 

Juvenile Drug Treatment Court

Juvenile drug treatment court has a specialized docket within the juvenile or family court system, to which selected delinquency cases, and in some instances status offenders, are referred for handling by a designated judge. The youths referred to this docket are identified as having problems with alcohol and/or other drugs. The juvenile drug treatment court judge maintains close oversight of each case through regular status hearings with the parties and their guardians. The judge both leads and works as a member of a team comprised of representatives from treatment, juvenile justice, social and mental health services, school and vocational training programs, law enforcement, probation, the prosecution, and the defense. Over the course of a year or more, the team meets frequently (often weekly), determining how best to address the substance abuse and related problems of the youth and his or her family that have brought the youth into contact with the justice system (National Drug Court Institute & National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, 2003). [Huddleston & Marlowe, National Drug Court Institute and United States Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance, Painting the Current Picture: A National Report on Drug Courts and Other Problem-Solving Court Programs in the United States (July 2011, p 45).] 

 

TRIBAL HEALING TO WELLNESS COURT

A tribal healing to wellness court is not simply a tribal court that handles alcohol or other drug abuse cases. Rather, is is a component of the tribal justice system that incorporates and adapts the wellness concept to meet the specific substance abuse needs of each tribal community. It provides an opportunity to address the devastation of alcohol or other drug abuse by establishing more structure and a higher level of accountability for these cases through a system of comprehensive supervision, drug testing, treatment services, immediate sanctions and incentives, team-based case management, and community support. The team includes not only tribal judges, advocates, prosecutors, police officers, educators, and substance abuse and mental health professionals, but also tribal elders and traditional healers. The concept borrows from traditional problem-solving methods utilized since time immemorial, and restores the person to his or her rightful place as a contributing member of the tribal community. The programs utilize the unique strengths and history of each tribe, and realign existing resources available to the community in an atmosphere of communication, cooperation, and collaboration (Native American Alliance Foundation, 2006; Tribal Law & Policy Institute, 2003). ​

 

 

List of Drug Treatment Courts 

See a list of drug treatment courts 
(includes adult, juvenile, family dependency, and DWI/sobriety courts)

 

 

Minimum Data Standards

Under MCL 600.1078, all adult and juvenile drug treatment courts must collect and provide data to the State Court Administrative Office (SCAO) on each drug court applicant and participant. MCL 600.1078(3) specifies that SCAO must develop a minimum standard data set that captures this data for the purpose of preparing an annual legislative report about drug court performance.

 
   

Ignition Interlock 

In 2010, the Ignition Interlock Pilot Project was established by Michigan Compiled Laws (MCL) 600.1084 and MCL 257.304. The law allows a restricted license to be issued to a person whose license is suspended, restricted, revoked or denied based on two or more convictions of driving while intoxicated or while impaired if the date of offense occurs on or after January 1, 2011. The individual must also be participating in a Sobriety Court program and have an ignition interlock device installed on each motor vehicle they own or operate.

 

An ignition interlock, or Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device [BAIID], is an in-car breathalyzer that measures a driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC). Before the vehicle can be started, the driver must exhale into the interlock device. If the driver’s BAC is above the pre-established level, the interlock device will prevent the car from starting. At random times after the engine has been started, the device will require the driver to provide another breath sample, called a “rolling retest.” If the breath sample is not provided, or the sample exceeds a set BAC, the device will log the event, warn the driver and start an alarm (that sounds until the ignition is turned off, or a clean breath sample has been provided.

 

Watch 2015 Ignition Interlock Press Conference here​.

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​Staff Contact

Lee Ann Gaspar

TrialCourtServices@courts.mi.gov​ 

(517) 373-6587​​​