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What you should know about juvenile diversion drug court

Juvenile Diversion Drug Court is a nine-month treatment program that was created for juveniles who have a substance abuse problem. Treatment in this program includes outpatient counseling for juveniles with alcohol and drug problems. In addition to the counseling, the juvenile must meet a stringent set of diversion requirements including random drug tests, a curfew, regular court appearances and even community service.

Not all juvenile are eligible for the drug court diversion program. Juveniles cannot have a prior record and will only be considered for the program if they are a first-time offender. They must also meet other diversion requirements as established by the court. Once the diversion program is successfully completed, the charges against the juvenile will then be dismissed.

Once accepted into the drug court program, the juvenile will have to work through the program's three phases. Initially, the juvenile typically meets with his or her court service officer on a weekly basis. These visits may occur at the court services office or at the juvenile's school or home. These meetings may also be conducted over the telephone. These meetings may then decrease over time, as the juvenile successfully completes each phase of the program.

In addition to the meetings, the juvenile will generally have to appear in court at least every other month. These appearances may also decrease in frequency as the juvenile completes each phase. If the juvenile does not stay in compliance with the requirements of the diversion program, however, they could receive additional community service or have the additional requirement of attending education groups. If they continuously disregard the requirements, they may even have their diversion opportunity revoked.

Defendants who are facing drug charges may find it beneficial to seek counsel with an experienced Kansas criminal attorney.

Source: Johnson County Court Services, "Juvenile Diversion Drug Court" Dec. 01, 2014

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