Swift County drug court has first graduation

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8th Judicial District Drug Court Coordinator Karon White and Judge Thomas Van Hon present Amy with her diploma on graduation during a ceremony Dec. 27 at the Swift County Courthouse.

Drug court breaks cycle of drug use

Late this past December Swift County 8th Judicial District Court saw its first graduate from the relatively new judicial program.

Started back in 2014, the drug court’s purpose is to break the cycle of drug and alcohol addiction, and the crimes that too often are committed by those trapped in that addiction. It is aimed at those perpetually in the criminal justice system who are considered at high risk to offend again despite the jail sentences they are given, and the fines and restitution they are ordered to pay.

But those court also sees in these offenders people who, given enough help and support, can free themselves from addiction and become law-abiding, productive citizens.

Already 8th Judicial District Drug Court Coordinator Karon White sees the program working. Since January of 2015 four people have graduated from the program in the southern assignment area, which includes Swift and Chippewa counties. Amy, who graduated last month, became the fifth graduate.

None of those who have graduated from the program have been back in court, she said.....

Drug court may have saved Amy’s life

Editor’s note: In this story on the 8th District Drug Court and its first Swift County graduate the individual we write about is referred to by her first name only. She did not want her last name used, but wanted to talk to the Swift County Monitor-News to tell the story of her journey from despair to redemption.

In a courtroom full of friends, supporters and family Amy became the first person to graduate from the Swift County 8th Judicial District Drug Court. It took a long time to earn that diploma – more than 800 days.

The 8th Judicial District’s Drug Court was established back in 2014 with the goal of breaking the cycle of chemical addiction and crime that would see people perpetually rotating through the courts.

“It has been a success and Amy is ready move on and do great things,” Drug Court Coordinator Karon White said....
 

For more on this story, and to keep up on all the latest news, subscribe to the Swift County Monitor-News print edition or our PDF internet edition. Call 320-843-4111 and you can get all the local news and sports delivered to you!

 

Pictured: 8th Judicial District Drug Court Coordinator Karon White and Judge Thomas Van Hon present Amy with her diploma on graduation during a ceremony Dec. 27 at the Swift County Courthouse.

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