Drug courts have a history in Florida, and important role

Various posts on our drug crimes defense blog have touched on the important truth that so many drug cases are tied to medical afflictions, such as mental illness and addiction. Incarceration often doesn’t help society or the person who is locked away.

There are alternative options in drug cases here in Florida and throughout the country. Drug courts attempt to address the deeper factors connected to the cases at-hand. They can be a more productive way for society to respond to drug activity.

Did you know that Florida is the home of the first official drug court? It was introduced into the state’s criminal justice system in 1989. With that seemingly long history, many might wonder why the option isn’t more widespread and relied upon.

The Government Accountability Office  describes drug court as essentially two-fold. It isn’t just about stopping drug-related activity and reducing the rate of drug crimes. The program is about treating someone’s substance abuse and addiction so that they no longer are drawn into drug activity.

A judge will evaluate whether a defendant in a drug case is fit for the program based on evidence that the person needs treatment and is likely to succeed in rehabilitation. Someone with no or a minimal criminal record may have a better chance at the drug court opportunity.

This aspect of eligibility for the drug court process is important in terms of working with a criminal defense lawyer whom you sincerely trust. Your attorney should have your unique and specific best interests at-heart and know how to fight for what is right for you.

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