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Court Programs

  • Jada Hector
  • David Khey
Chapter

Abstract

The dawn of widespread court intervention for mental health concerns truly began with the drug court concept developed in Dade (now Miami-Dade) County, Florida, at the conclusion of the 1980s in direct response to Miami’s infamous drug scene. The darker aspects of popular culture depictions of drugs impact on Miami—Scarface, Cocaine Cowboys, and Miami Vice, to name a few—were in plain view on a daily basis for local judges, public defenders, and prosecutors. Specifically, these key players grew wary of witnessing the same offenders appear before the court under the same or incredibly similar circumstances, sparking the concept of drug court (Goldkamp & Weiland, 1993). Later named a problem-solving court, specialty court, or therapeutic court, the innovation of drug court centers on its holistic approach of combining aspects of treatment, providing general care by leveraging community resources (e.g., housing, health care, food banks, transportation, etc.), and judicial oversight to enable its participants a chance to break the drug-crime-criminal justice pattern in their lives (Carey, Mackin, & Finigan, 2012). In years to come, this concept was reinforced and fine-tuned with emerging evidence-based practices to ensure the lasting success and pro-social gains of participants, and a vast array of research would be published to support the successes of a fully operational drug court steeped in evidence-based practices (Gottfredson, Najaka, & Kearley, 2003; Rossman & Zweig, 2012; Wilson, Mitchell, & MacKenzie, 2006). Soon, this model would be redeveloped to cater to individuals with the mental health-(drugs)-crime-criminal justice pattern in their lives—called mental health court or behavioral health court. These specialty courts lie at the forefront of local court innovations to intervene on behalf of individuals with mental illness being processed by the criminal justice system.

Keywords

Court intervention Reentry Recidivism Reducing recidivism Drug court Specialty court Program fidelity Special populations Evidence-based practices Revocation 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jada Hector
    • 1
  • David Khey
    • 2
  1. 1.New OrleansUSA
  2. 2.University of LouisianaLafayetteUSA

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