Drug Court Celebrates a Decade of Getting People Clean
Yes, it is another drug court graduation story. I've stepped over several so as not to fill this day's news feeds with story after story of graduations. But, this one is different. First, it is a special occasion for the court-ten years. Secondly, it includes a photo of a judge hugging a defendant in congratulations. Visit the link just for the photo.
Kitsap County Superior Court Judge Jay Roof, who has overseen the program for all its 10 years, said graduates could have pleaded guilty or fought their charges, and ended up with "dead time in jail."
Instead, they went through multiple weekly treatment sessions and group meetings, were tested for drugs more than one hundred times and cleaned "up the wreckage of their past," down to parking tickets.
"Addiction is not a moral failure," Roof told the graduates. "It is an insidious disease."
Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna, who stopped in for the 10th anniversary, praised Roof's program, saying he "knows of no Superior Court judge as deeply committed to drug court" as Roof.
McKenna said every dollar to drug court means $10 to $12 saved in the long run.
By staying clean, Roof said graduates don't commit future crimes that strain the criminal justice system and create future victims. And instead of becoming a burden on the system, they become hard-working taxpayers.