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The Fourth Judicial District Court and Hennepin County implemented Drug Court in 1997, and revised the program in 2007, with the mission to increase public safety, improve chemical health, and reduce crime by targeting the population of adult, non-violent, chemically dependent, felony property and drug offenders, who are at high risk to reoffend. Drug Court is a voluntary, minimum 12-month, post-conviction program, involving the coordinated efforts of the judge, prosecutor, defense attorney, law enforcement, social services, probation, and treatment specialists to quickly identify and intervene in order to break the cycle of chemical dependency and crime.
The judge is the central figure in a team effort to keep participants engaged in treatment, to reward progress for meeting goals and to sanction noncompliant behavior. Drug Court participants receive ongoing judicial supervision from the court, are placed under intensive community supervision, undergo frequent drug testing and engage in long-term chemical dependency treatment. In addition, Drug Court assists participants in enhancing life-skills which may include such services as: job training, education, family counseling, etc. Drug Court encourages participants to take control of their own recovery, but it also has clear and definite requirements which if broken are swiftly dealt with by the judge.
Judge Bruce Peterson presides over Drug Court. If you are interested in observing Drug Court, hearings take place every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. in Courtroom #C-853 in the Hennepin Co. Govt. Center.
For more information, please contact the Program Coordinator:
Drug Court Brochure
Drug Court Participant Handbook
Drug Courts: Justice that Heals (27 min. video) (co-produced by the MN Judicial Branch and TPT-MN Channel)
Hennepin County Chemical Dependency Task Force Report 2007
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