Defender Argues Problem-Solving Courts Unconstitutional
The Washington Post reports:
[Excerpt}: Drug courts, a forum designed to give addicted offenders a second chance, are under attack in Maryland -- and not by prosecutors.
The state's public defender says Maryland's drug courts give judges too much power and defendants too little protection, and yesterday she argued to the state's high court that the tribunals are not constitutional.
Public Defender Nancy S. Forster told the Court of Appeals that judges should not shed impartiality by sitting down with prosecutors, social workers and defense attorneys to try to help a defendant. She argued that judges should not be permitted to send a defendant to jail again and again without a full hearing each time, as she said judges in the drug courts do.
"There is no due process in drug treatment court," she said.
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