Anne Arundel Drug Treatment Court Celebrates its Largest Graduation
(Annapolis, MD — May 12, 2008) The Anne Arundel County District Court will hold a graduation for 15 clients – the largest graduation class in the history of its adult drug treatment court – on Thursday, May 15, at 1:30 p.m., in the District Court Building, 251 Rowe Blvd., Annapolis. Retired Judge James W. Dryden, who had served as Anne Arundel District Court administrative judge and drug court judge, will be the keynote speaker.
“Drug court is very challenging for people,” said Anne Arundel District Judge Thomas J. Pryal, who presides over drug treatment court. “This is a time for much celebration, as each of these graduates has reached a milestone in their road to recovery and should be recognized for their accomplishments.”
After a reception in the District Courthouse, participants and their families are invited to take part in another reception at the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court, 7 Church Circle, Annapolis. In celebration of National Drug Court Month, the Circuit Court will host an open house of its newly finished drug court program offices. Photos and essays by past juvenile drug treatment court participants will be on display during the open house, which starts at 4 p.m.
Drug treatment court programs provide treatment, supervision, and judicial monitoring to habitual offenders whose crimes are addiction-driven. Participants take part in vocational, educational, and life skills training to address issues that contribute to their drug or alcohol abuse and criminal behavior.
Nationally, drug treatment court programs have emerged as a practical, cost-effective alternative to incarceration. Re-arrest rates for drug court graduates are significantly lower than for the general population.
More than 600 people have graduated from Anne Arundel County District Court and Circuit Court drug treatment courts over the past decade. Maryland’s first drug treatment court began in Baltimore in 1994, and there are now 40 drug treatment courts throughout the state with more planned.
For more information about Maryland’s drug courts, visit the Web site for the Maryland Judiciary’s Office of Problem Solving Courts, www.mdcourts.gov/opsc/dtc/.
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(Editor’s Note: Members of the media are invited to attend the graduation at the Anne Arundel District Court and/or the open house at the Anne Arundel Circuit Court. Cameras must be approved in advance. Please contact the Court Information Office at (410) 260-1488 for more information.)