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City of Lackawanna
DRUG COURT POLICY AND PROCEDURE MANUAL
ESTABLISHED 1/96 BY
Honorable Frederic Marrano
Revised 9/04
TABLE OF CONTENTS
TABLE OF CONTENTS…………………………………………………………………….
FORWARD…………………………………………………………………………………..
INTRODUCTION………………...
The purpose of the following document is to provide a general framework of common principles, policies and
practices for t...
INTRODUCTION
A Drug Court is a court that has been specifically designed and staffed to supervise non-violent drug
depende...
Although individual Drug Court Programs will vary, the goals common to all are to:
Reduce participant contacts with the cr...
I. CURRENT ELIGIBILITY STANDARDS
Standard: Consideration for admission to the Drug Court Program shall be limited to
those...
II. SUITABILITY STANDARDS
Standard: LTC Treatment staff shall assist the Drug Court Judge in
determining the overall suita...
I. DRUG COURT OPERATIIONS
A. ALL INVOLVED AGENCIES
Standard: All agencies will cooperate with efforts to establish qualifi...
Programs by making appropriate adjustments to internal policies, practices, and procedures
to ensure successful day-to-day...
A. INTAKE/REFERRAL
Standard: Defendants in custody will be referred to drug court within the statutory
time frame required...
A. THE COURTROOM
Standard: The court recognizes the drug court calendar as a priority and will
establish a specialized, se...
A. PROGRAM FEES
Standard: All drug court participants are required to access any and all forms of insurance. This
insuranc...
A. DATA COLLECTION & PROGRAM EVALUATION
Standard: LTC shall utilize a automated data collection and program evaluation pro...
I. TREATMENT
A. THE TREATMENT PROGRAM
Standard: All Drug Court participants shall be offered a comprehensive and
integrate...
a. Phase Two – Intensive Treatment
i. Individual and group counseling
ii. Emphasis placed on vocational/educational counse...
a. Phase Three – Transition
i. Individual and group counseling
ii. On-going review and updating of treatment/transition pl...
A. THE TREATMENT PROVIDER
Standard: The Drug Court Program shall utilize only established drug treatment
Agencies which ar...
Standard: The treatment provider shall collaborate with the Drug Court Judge,
District Attorney and Public Defender to dev...
V. ROLE OF THE JUDGE:
Standard: The focus and direction of a drug court program are provided through
the effective leaders...
APPENDICES
A. Drug Court Docket/Case Processing
B. Drug Court Policy re: Urine Results and Statements
APPENDIX A
DRUG COURT DOCKET/CASE PROCESSING
DAY 1-2 Arraignment
District attorney and defense counsel discusses referral ...
APPENDIX B
DRUG COURT POLICY
RE: URINE RESULTS AND STATEMENTS
URINE RESULTS
Urinalysis results will only be used to assist...
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City of lackawanna_drug_court_policy_and_procedure_manual

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City of lackawanna_drug_court_policy_and_procedure_manual

  1. 1. City of Lackawanna DRUG COURT POLICY AND PROCEDURE MANUAL ESTABLISHED 1/96 BY Honorable Frederic Marrano Revised 9/04
  2. 2. TABLE OF CONTENTS TABLE OF CONTENTS……………………………………………………………………. FORWARD………………………………………………………………………………….. INTRODUCTION…………………………………………………………………………… I. CURRENT ELIGIBLITY STANDARDS………………………………………….. II. III. SUITABILITY STANDARDS………………………………………………………. IV. III. DRUG COURT OPERATIONS……………………………………………………. IV. A. All Involved Agencies B. Intake/Referral C. The Courtroom D. Program Fees E. Progressive Sanctions F. Data Collection & Program Evaluation I. TREATMENT……………………………………………………………………….. II. A. The Treatment Program B. The Treatment Provider I. ROLE OF THE JUDGE……………………………………………………………. APPENDICES………………………………………………………………………………. Appendix A Drug Court Docket/Case Processing Appendix B Drug Court Policy re: Urine Results and Statements FORWARD
  3. 3. The purpose of the following document is to provide a general framework of common principles, policies and practices for the Lackawanna Treatment Court (LTC). This structure of standards and practices will: Maximize limited resources and ensure greater coordination among all court-supervised drug treatment programs throughout Erie and Niagara Counties; Maximize coordination and sharing of scarce treatment resources; Strengthen efforts to obtain Federal funding; Facilitate development of coordinated long-range plans for financing drug court operations; and Implement Ten Key Components of a successful Drug court as written by OJP/DCPO. Developed through a consensus of involved countywide agencies, the standards include all of the elements that are considered essential to the operation of a Drug Court Program in Erie and Niagara Counties. Collectively, they represent a required minimum program model. Specific practices are also described to provide examples of action, which should be taken to ensure conformity with country wide standards. The standards and practices described in this document is the product of over two years of experience in planning and implementing the city’s first Drug Court Program, which began operation in 1/96. Clearly, there are and will continue to be differences between individual Drug Court Programs. All programs are intended to reflect the unique needs and operational environments of the local court jurisdictions. However, it is also clear that there is a need for overall uniformity as to basic program components and operational procedures and principles. Therefore, this document is an attempt to outline those fundamental standards and practices to which all Drug Court Programs in the Eighth Judicial District should subscribe.
  4. 4. INTRODUCTION A Drug Court is a court that has been specifically designed and staffed to supervise non-violent drug dependent defendants who have been referred to a comprehensive and judicially-monitored program of drug treatment and rehabilitation services. Based on an innovative program that was first developed in Miami, Florida, the Drug Court concept has received widespread attention as an effective treatment strategy for drug-involved criminal offenders. Drug Courts represent a very non-traditional approach to criminal offenders who are addicted to drugs. Rather than focusing only on the crimes they commit and the punishments they receive, Drug Court also attempts to solve some of their underlying problems. Drug Courts are built upon a unique partnership between the criminal justice system and drug treatment community, one that structures treatment intervention around the authority and personal involvement of a single Drug Court Judge. Drug Courts are also dependent upon the creation of a non-adversarial courtroom atmosphere where a single judge and a dedicated team of court officers and staff work together toward a common goal of breaking the cycle of drug abuse and criminal behavior. Because of the unique problems and opportunities that present themselves in working with drug-involved criminal defendants, treatment and rehabilitation strategies must be “reality-based.” Drug Court programs must therefore recognize that: Addicts are most vulnerable to successful intervention when they are in the crisis of initial arrest and incarceration, so intervention must be immediate and upfront. Preventing gaps in communication and ensuring offender accountability are of critical importance, so court supervision must be coordinated and comprehensive. Addiction to drugs is a long-standing, debilitating condition, so treatment must be long-term and comprehensive. Addiction to drugs seldom exists in isolation from other serious problems, which undermine rehabilitation, so treatment must include integration of other available services and resources such as educational assessments, vocational assessments and training and job placement. Relapse and intermittent progress are part of the recovery process, so progressive sanctions and incentives must be integral to the Drug Court treatment strategy.
  5. 5. Although individual Drug Court Programs will vary, the goals common to all are to: Reduce participant contacts with the criminal justice system; Reduce costs associated with criminal case processing and re-arrest; Reduce jail overcrowding; Introduce participants to an ongoing process of recovery designed to achieve total abstinence from illicit/illegal drugs; and Promote self-sufficiency and empower substance abusers to become productive and responsible members of the community.
  6. 6. I. CURRENT ELIGIBILITY STANDARDS Standard: Consideration for admission to the Drug Court Program shall be limited to those defendants who: Have been arrested and charged with a. Misdemeanor and/or felony drug possession. Felony offenses considered are those for criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree, in violation of section 220.16-1 of the NYS penal law, where the amount seized is less than 300 milligrams; and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fifth degree, in violation of section 220.06-5 of the penal law, where the amount seized is less than 1000 milligrams. Misdemeanor offenses that may be included for participation are to include drug-related petit larceny, prostitution, trespass and other forms of theft related offenses. b. Do not qualify under the above, but are deemed suitable by the drug court team as appropriate for court monitored treatment. Have violated probation on prior conviction(s) of the NYS penal law. Practices: 1. Defendants with a prior conviction for a violent offense, and/or a current charge of a violent offense, and/or drug trafficking/sales are ineligible. 2. The admission of a defendant to the Drug Court Program shall be made by the Drug Court Judge only. This determination shall be made based on recommendations from the District Attorney, Public Defender, Drug Court Coordinator and the Treatment Counselor.
  7. 7. II. SUITABILITY STANDARDS Standard: LTC Treatment staff shall assist the Drug Court Judge in determining the overall suitability of defendants for the program by completing a standardized Drug Court Screening for eligible defendants Practices: 1. Risk assessment factors contributing to admission to the Drug Court Program include family and community ties, employment status, and a summary of the defendant’s prior criminal history for offenses other than those which would “automatically” exclude him/her but which may be helpful in determining suitability for the Drug Court Program. Consideration of risk assessment factors is discretionary and shall be used by the Drug Court Judge on a case-by-case basis. Standard: The Drug Court Treatment Staff under the supervision of the Drug Court Coordinator shall assist the Drug Court judge in determining the overall suitability of defendants for the program by interviewing eligible defendants and summarizing any background and/or drug history information which may bear on the individual’s potential for success in the intensive drug court treatment program Standard: Defendants currently on methadone maintenance shall be considered unsuitable candidates for the program, since a principle goal of Drug Court is to help defendants achieve and maintain a drug free lifestyle. Individuals who are prescribed methadone as a means of detoxification shall be considered on a case by case basis.
  8. 8. I. DRUG COURT OPERATIIONS A. ALL INVOLVED AGENCIES Standard: All agencies will cooperate with efforts to establish qualified Drug Court programs which meet the standards for operating and administering a Drug Court Standard: Each agency shall assign staff, and alternates, to be dedicated to the Drug Court based on personal interest in the program, interpersonal skills, motivation, and professional abilities Standard: All agencies agree to provide orientation and mandatory training for assigned staff in the Drug Court concept and the day-to-day operation Standard: All the participating agencies agree to support qualified Drug Court
  9. 9. Programs by making appropriate adjustments to internal policies, practices, and procedures to ensure successful day-to-day operations of the program. Practices: 1. The sponsoring municipal court, the District Attorney, Public Defender, local law enforcement, Sheriff, NYS OASAS, and the Eighth Judicial District office will, where appropriate: a. Provide administrative support for the development and compliance with agency-wide, uniform policies and procedures for all Drug Court operations b. Encourage agency-wide communication and cooperation between dedicated Drug Court personnel c. Develop agency-wide procedures to collect and maintain statistical and evaluation information based upon countywide standards d. Establish a jurisdictional Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), based on the established countywide MOU, with all agencies/departments to ensure the continuity of all legal policies and other standards necessary to the operation of Drug Court.
  10. 10. A. INTAKE/REFERRAL Standard: Defendants in custody will be referred to drug court within the statutory time frame required for arraignment Practices: 1. The Court coordinator and/or court staff will ensure that the appropriate parties are involved with the timely assessment of the Drug Court candidates prior to Drug Court referral 2. The Court coordinator and/or court staff will provide a packet to the Drug Court Judge of all essential documents including: Pretrial Eligibility Assessment Treatment Suitability Assessment Case file (Original or facsimile copies) 3. If accepted, defendants will be sent immediately to the treatment center/ program where orientation will begin Standard: At the discretion of the Drug Court Judge, formal admission into the program may be deferred subject to successful completion of a 2-week “Trial Period” Practices: 1. In order to “pass” the 2-week trial phase, the Drug Court Judge will advise the defendant that he/she must: a. Attend initial program orientation b. Attend scheduled treatment sessions c. Comply with all drug testing requirements d. Return to court as ordered e. Attend special monitoring, as ordered by the court and facilitated by TASC and/or Probation. f. Verify attendance at Self-help at the frequency the court orders.
  11. 11. A. THE COURTROOM Standard: The court recognizes the drug court calendar as a priority and will establish a specialized, separate court, on a part or full time basis, dedicated to the evaluation, treatment and supervision of eligible and suitable drug court defendants Standard: The Drug Court clerk, as an agent of the Judge and the Court Coordinator, shall keep the Drug Court operations separate, ensure that all Drug Court cases are processed in an efficient manner and gather daily statistics to document the success or failure of the Drug Court. Practices: 1. Drug Court sessions will include the admittance and orientation of new participants into the Program in conjunction with progress reports of defendants previously admitted. 2. The Clerk’s Office will provide clerical support for the operation of the Drug Court and process all Drug Court cases as priority. Clerical support will include the timely preparation of court files, Drug Court eligibility roster, courtroom calendars, computer entries and collection of data to document the success or failure of Drug Court. All docket/case processing shall follow common practices and protocols. (See Appendix A). 3. A Court Administrator/Chief Clerk, necessary to the overall operation of the Drug Court, may be designated to oversee all clerical and management aspects of the Drug Court and participate in all Committee meetings. Standard: Pursuant to the written policies of the Public Defender and District Attorney, urinalysis results shall only be used to evaluate the participant’s progress in the Drug Court Program. (See Appendix B For policy). Standard: Pursuant to the written policies of the Public Defender and District Attorney, statements made by Drug Court participants shall not be used in subsequent adversarial proceedings. (See Appendix B for policy). Standard: All treatment related documents, including progress reports, test results, etc. shall be placed in a confidential envelope. Envelope shall be ordered sealed at conclusion of Drug Court Program.
  12. 12. A. PROGRAM FEES Standard: All drug court participants are required to access any and all forms of insurance. This insurance may include public benefits made available to the defendant in their county of origin/residence. Practices: 1. The treatment provider, in collaboration with the Drug Court Judge and program coordinator, will establish administrative and bookkeeping procedures to ensure collection of fees and regular reports to the Court. 2. Full payment of the fee must be satisfied prior to graduation unless waived by the Drug Court Judge. A. PROGRESSIVE SANCTIONS Standard: The Drug Court program must include a plan for graduated sanctions which may be applied as an immediate and direct consequence of program failure. Practices: The Drug Court Judge, at his discretion, may employ the following graduated sanctions to assist defendants in complying with the program: Increased drug testing Increased participation in outpatient individual and/or group sessions Increased frequency of court appearances before the Drug Court Judge Commitment to community residential treatment for a specified period of time Detention for a brief period of time to be determined by the Drug Court Judge
  13. 13. A. DATA COLLECTION & PROGRAM EVALUATION Standard: LTC shall utilize a automated data collection and program evaluation process which will conform to requirements as established by the Drug Court Oversight Subcommittee and the standards set forth by OJP/DCPO. The system to be utilized is the UTA. Standard: The Drug Court Program shall utilize a competitively bid Drug Court Evaluator who will assist in the collection of and maintain the statistical data for the program, and provide ongoing progress reports as requested. Practices: The design of Drug Court data base systems shall include: Maximum utilization of existing countywide justice information systems and system interfaces Maximum utilization of existing County data communication networks Minimum reliance on manual data entry and report generation to reduce redundancy and errors Safeguards to ensure data integrity for all affected systems Safeguards to ensure privacy and security of all records Standard: The LTC, following program start-up, shall recognize a 6-month “Demonstration period” for statistical purposes, during which time data collection efforts shall focus on defining the participant population and identifying critical operational issues. Practices: A 6-month demonstration period shall be established to: Identify implementation issues Make adjustments to program operations and policies Establish and “fine tune” all of the needed program components Establish management information procedures Establish problem solving procedures to address unanticipated developments
  14. 14. I. TREATMENT A. THE TREATMENT PROGRAM Standard: All Drug Court participants shall be offered a comprehensive and integrated program of drug treatment and rehabilitation services to be supervised by the Drug Court Judge. Standard: Individualized treatment plans for participants shall consist of several distinct phases, each of which shall have specified treatment objectives, therapeutic and rehabilitative activities and requirements for “Graduation”. Practices: Establish minimum program elements for each treatment phase that include but are not limited to: a. Phase One – Stabilization, Orientation and Assessment i. Orientation/Overview of Program ii. Assessment and initial treatment plan development iii. Individual and group counseling sessions iv. Regular attendance at Self-help meetings (3 per week or as specified by counselor) v. Urinalysis testing (2 tests per week minimum) vi. Recreation fellowship vii. Advancement criteria: a.) No positive urinalysis results after clean result for a two week period; b.) No unexcused absences from scheduled services for a two week period; and c.) Employed or positive response to vocational/educational goals d.) If applicable, full compliance with all community residence rules. viii. Average completion period – 2 to 8 weeks
  15. 15. a. Phase Two – Intensive Treatment i. Individual and group counseling ii. Emphasis placed on vocational/educational counseling and referral iii. Urinalysis testing (2 times per week minimum) iv. On-going review and updating of treatment/transition plans v. Continued attendance at Self-help meetings (2 times per week or as specified by counselor) vi. Recreation/fellowship vii. Advancement criteria: a.) No positive urinalysis results since clean date for 60 consecutive days; b.) No unexcused absences from urinalysis testing for 60 consecutive days; c.) No unexcused absences from scheduled services ; d.) Employed or positive response to vocational/educational goals, and e.)Demonstrated adjustment to treatment viii. Average completion period – 12 to 16 weeks
  16. 16. a. Phase Three – Transition i. Individual and group counseling ii. On-going review and updating of treatment/transition plans iii. Urinalysis testing (1 time per week, as well as random) iv. Continued attendance at Self-help meetings (2 per week or as specified by counselor) v. Recreation/fellowship vi. Greater emphasis on the progress of vocational/educational plans vii. Advancement criteria: a.) No positive urinalysis results; b.) No unexcused absences from urinalysis testing; c.) No unexcused absences from scheduled services; d.) Employed or positive response to vocational/educational goals; and e.) Fulfillment of goals as stated in individual’s master treatment plan. viii. Average Completion period – 12 to 16 weeks Standard: “Graduation” from each phase shall ONLY be determined by the Drug Court Judge and on the condition that the participant has satisfied the established minimum criteria for advancement Standard: Although actual length of treatment program for each participant will vary greatly depending upon individual progress and drug test results, the total period for treatment and court supervision SHALL NOT BE LESS THAN One (1) Year Standard: Termination from the program shall ONLY be determined by the Drug Court Judge with appropriate input from the Court Coordinator, treatment provider, District Attorney and Public Defender.
  17. 17. A. THE TREATMENT PROVIDER Standard: The Drug Court Program shall utilize only established drug treatment Agencies which are licensed and/or certified by the State. Standard: The treatment provider shall designate a specific staff person – and a designated alternate – to serve as liaison to the Drug Court and to ATTEND ALL Drug Court sessions Standard: Prior to a judicial determination of acceptance into the Drug Court Program, the treatment team shall provide the court with a written screening form verifying the “suitability” of the defendant for the program Practices: 1. “Suitability” for the Drug Court Program should be limited to persons who: a. Are willing to comply with the court order to drug treatment; b. Are 18 years or older ( unless otherwise requested by parent and/or guardian); c. Have a history of substance abuse; d. Do not have a history of violence; e. Are not acutely mentally ill or suicidal; and f. Are able to physically participate in treatment activities (within guidelines of American Disabilities Act). 1. All involved agencies will cooperate with the treatment provider to ensure reasonable and timely access to incarcerated defendants by the court liaison counselor to potential Drug Court participants. Standard: Prior to completion of the initial phase of treatment, the treatment provider shall prepare an initial assessment and treatment plan for each Drug Court participant. Standard: Prior to each Drug Court appearance, the treatment provider shall submit to the Court a summary progress report which documents drug test results, compliance with treatment appointments and any relevant case information which can be appropriately shared with the Judge in open court. Standard: The treatment provider shall maintain for each participant confidential case management documentation including, but not limited to; initial assessments and treatment plans, progress notes, services provided, attendance records and drug test results.
  18. 18. Standard: The treatment provider shall collaborate with the Drug Court Judge, District Attorney and Public Defender to develop and implement a plan for urinalysis drug testing of participants during specified mandatory visits to the treatment facility. Practices: The treatment provider shall: a. Contract with a laboratory or conduct urine drug testing that meets the minimum standards for federal agencies. b. Develop policies and procedures to ensure security and reasonable controls to deter tampering or misrepresentation of specimens or test results. c. Develop procedures to ensure that the participant is tested whenever there is a mandatory treatment center visit and that the frequency of tests is appropriate for the treatment phase and in accordance with the orders of the Drug Court Judge. d. Maintain and secure test result records for each defendant and develop a reporting format and procedure for presenting testing results to the Drug Court Judge prior to all scheduled court appearances. e. Communicate urinalysis results to each client during their visit to the treatment center. f. If applicable, Treatment provider will collaborate with Community Residence for all residents treatment planning to allow for maximum compliance with all treatment goals. Standard: The treatment provider, in collaboration with the Drug Court Judge and County and Town departments, shall establish a localized network of public and private agencies through memoranda of understanding or other formal agreements to provide support services to participants which at a minimum include housing, individual assessments, education, vocational training, and job placement.
  19. 19. V. ROLE OF THE JUDGE: Standard: The focus and direction of a drug court program are provided through the effective leadership of a single drug court judge. Practices: 1. The Judge is in a unique position to exert effective leadership in the promotion of coordinated drug control efforts. 2. To encourage full commitment to the success of a Drug Court Program, the Judge must allow program staff to participate fully in the design and implementation of the program. 3. Partnerships should be formed between the Judge, all affected criminal justice agencies and the treatment provider; which will allow collaboration in decision-making, sharing of resources and coordination of efforts. 4. The Judge is responsible for maintaining a non-adversarial atmosphere in the Drug Court. All staff must see their job as the facilitation of the participant’s rehabilitation. 5. The Judge must be one of the key motivational factors to convince the drug offender to seek rehabilitation. Less formal and more frequent court appearances must be scheduled to allow the judge to motivate and monitor the participants. 6. The Judge should conduct court such that all participants benefit by observation of others as they progress (or fail to progress) in treatment and the Court takes appropriate action. 7. The Drug Court Judge must be willing to serve as program advocate. He/She will, represent the program in the community, before government, criminal justice agencies, and other public forums. He/She will be willing to seek funding for the program.
  20. 20. APPENDICES A. Drug Court Docket/Case Processing B. Drug Court Policy re: Urine Results and Statements
  21. 21. APPENDIX A DRUG COURT DOCKET/CASE PROCESSING DAY 1-2 Arraignment District attorney and defense counsel discusses referral to Drug Court, if agreeable, a joint recommendation is made to the arraigning Judge for referral to Drug Court. Arraigning Judge refers case for an appearance before the Drug Court Judge. DAY 2 Processing Defendant appears before the Drug Court Judge and is advised of the plea offer, open discovery by District Attorney, treatment recommendations, and waivers of speedy trial and waiver of felony hearing, waiver of confidentiality, Drug Court Contract, and the assessment process. Drug Court Judge refers defendant to formal assessment at treatment provider’s facility. Assessing treatment provider will begin the assessment and provide to the court at the next appearance a completed assessment that will include recommendations related to housing, health, education, employment, and training. DAY 2-14 Acceptance All parties agree on conditions of enrollment Drug Court contract signed along with the form clearly identifying non-compliance and the sanctions administered by the Drug Court Judge for the same. All waivers are signed Court schedule is prepared, with a minimum of a weekly report to the Drug Court until defendant’s positive participation warrants a reduction of frequency. Defendant may exercise option to return to criminal court without reprisal/penalty. DAY 14 to COMPLETION Treatment to continue with defendant and treatment provider reporting regularly to court
  22. 22. APPENDIX B DRUG COURT POLICY RE: URINE RESULTS AND STATEMENTS URINE RESULTS Urinalysis results will only be used to assist the court and health care providers in evaluating the client’s progress. The results will only be used to determine if the defendant is progressing satisfactorily; to determine if the treatment plan needs modifying; or, as an aid, in determining whether the individual should be terminated or graduated from the program. Therefore, under no circumstances shall urinalysis results be used as evidence of a new crime, a violation of probation or in any other manner not consistent with the goals of the Drug Court. STATEMENTS The primary purpose of this program is treatment. Therefore, any statements made by a defendant participating in the program shall not be used against him or her in any subsequent adversarial proceeding. However, spontaneous statements made by the defendant in open court, which refer to unrelated felonious criminal activity and which are not related to the defendant’s participation in the Drug Court program, may be admissible in other criminal proceedings and such admissibility shall be determined in an evidentiary hearing according to the Rules of Evidence.

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