17th Judicial District Treatment Court

Drug Treatment Court Eligibility | DUI Treatment Court Eligibility | Referral & Screening | Program Phases | Program Graduation | Community Service | Team Members | Contact

Mission Statement

The mission of the 17th Judicial District Drug Treatment Court is to reduce recidivism by facilitating treatment and rehabilitation and to provide increased supervision to criminal substance abusers, as opposed to simply warehousing them. The goal is to return clean and sober individuals to the community with an improved quality of life who are better equipped to maintain their sobriety, thereby having a positive impact on and improving the community as a whole.


Where change begins…

Program History and Description

Planning for the 17th Judicial District Treatment Court began in July 2007, and was started under of the supervision of President Judge Harold F. Woelfel Jr. The Drug Court tract enrolled its first participants on July 2, 2008 and held its first graduation on May 19, 2010. The DUI Court tract enrolled its first participants on January 13th, 2010 and had its first graduation on March 30th, 2011.

In September 2012, the 17th District Treatment Court received its state accreditation, being on the 4th county in the Commonwealth to achieve such recognition.

The Treatment Court is a highly structured program that combines drug/alcohol treatment and support services through court supervision. Non-violent offenders who use illicit substances and/or drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol can receive the help they need to overcome their addictions while under the strict supervision of the Treatment Court Judge. The Treatment Court is unique because it represents a much closer working union between treatment and the criminal justice system than what is traditionally seen in the criminal courts. All participants are required to appear regularly for status hearings in front of the Treatment Court Judge. At that time they will be rewarded or sanctioned dependent upon their progress in the program.

The end result is a greater likelihood that offenders will remain drug/alcohol free while avoiding further contacts with the criminal justice system and will become productive members of society.

Drug Treatment Court Eligibility Requirements

1. Participants are required to be residents of the 17th Judicial District
2. Crimes must be addiction driven
3. Post-plea program
4. Be charged with a misdemeanor or felony

Offenders who are facing a probation or parole revocation for drug-related violations are also eligible for placement into Drug Treatment Court.

D.U.I. Treatment Court Eligibility Requirements

1. Participants are required to be residents of the 17th Judicial District
2. Plead guilty to one of the following D.U.I. offenses:

  • 2nd Offense, 3rd Tier
  • 3rd Offense, 2nd Tier
  • 3rd Offense, 3rd Tier

3. Participants must have a moderate to severe substance dependence

Offenders facing parole/probation revocations for substance use related violations are also eligible for placement into D.U.I. Treatment Court provided the underlying offense was a D.U.I.

Referral and Screening Process

Referrals for Treatment Court may come from Police, District Attorneys, Judges, Probation Departments, treatment providers, victims, and defense counsel. All applications for treatment court are to be submitted to the Treatment Court Coordinator and/or the corresponding county probation department.

After an application is submitted and the District Attorney recommends the application for review, the defendant is required to meet with the probation department. The probation department prepares a Pre-sentence Investigation Report and completes a Risk/Needs assessment. All applicants are referred to CMSU for a drug and alcohol assessment. If accepted into the program, the defendant is then scheduled to enter a plea and be sentenced to a period of Intermediate Punishment at which time their participation in the program begins.


Honesty is the rule…

Program Phases

The Treatment Court Program is broken down into three separate phases. Each phase takes a minimum of 4 months to complete with the entire program taking approximately 12 to 18 months to complete.

Phase 1: (4 months)

  • Weekly Court appearances
  • Random Urine Screens
  • Attendance at Recommended Treatment
  • Attendance at Self-Help meetings (5 per week)
  • Obtain Stable Housing
  • Obtain employment/Begin Community Service
  • Begin payment of Court ordered fees
  • Minimum of 2 weekly probation contacts
  • Electronic Monitoring via SCRAM/SLEEPTIME/GPS/HOUSE ARREST
  • Attendance at scheduled case management appointments

Phase 2: (4 months)

  • Bi-weekly Court appearances
  • Random Urine Screens
  • Attendance at Recommended Treatment
  • Attendance at Self-Help meetings
  • 90 days Clean/Sober
  • Maintain Stable Housing
  • Maintain Employment or job/educational training
  • Continue payment of Court ordered fees
  • Removal from Electronic Monitoring/House Arrest devices
  • Attendance at scheduled case management appointments
  • Minimum of 2 weekly probation contacts
  • Participate in Victim Impact Panel

Phase 3: (4 months)

  • Monthly Court appearances
  • Random Urine Screens
  • Continue in any recommended treatment
  • Maintain employment or job/educational training
  • 120 days clean/sober in order to move to graduation
  • Maintain Stable Housing
  • Continue payment of Court ordered fees
  • Removal of SLEEPTIME/SCRAM devices
  • Continued attendance at Self-Help meetings
  • Attendance at scheduled case management appointments
  • Weekly probation contacts (which can be reduced with team approval)

Program Graduation

Participants who successfully complete all three phases of the Treatment Court program will be scheduled for graduation. A graduation ceremony will be held, and each graduate will receive a certificate of completion. The following are mandatory requirements for graduation from Treatment Court:

  • Treatment Compliant
  • Stable Housing
  • No Pending Legal matters
  • Employment or Viable Income
  • Minimum 6 months clean and sober


Recovery is the ultimate reward…

Community Service

All participants who are accepted into the Treatment Court program are required to complete community service. Upon entrance into the program, participants are assigned 40 hours of community service. After completion of the 40 hours, participants who are working less than 35 hours per week in approved employment are required to complete a weekly community service assignment based upon the hours per week that they are employed. All participants are required to participate in any special/annual community service projects as deemed appropriate by the Treatment Court Judge.

Team Members

The Treatment Court team is made up of Judges, District Attorneys, Probation Officers, Caseworkers, Public Defenders, the Snyder/Union CJAB Coordinator, and the Victim/Witness Coordinators. The team members meet every Wednesday prior to the status hearings and discuss the progress of the participants in the Treatment Court program. The following is a list of available links to the various team members’ offices: Treatment Court Judge, Magisterial District Judge, Union County District Attorney, Snyder County District Attorney, Union County Probation, CMSU, Union County Public Defender, Union County Victim/Witness Coordinator, Union County Sheriff, and the Snyder County Victim/Witness Coordinator.

Contact

TreatmentCourt.org

Steve Diehl
Treatment Court Coordinator
Union County Adult Probation Office
103 S. 2nd Street
Lewisburg, PA 17837
Telephone: (570) 524-8790
Toll Free Telephone: (877) 246-5895
Fax: (570) 524-8745
Email: sdiehl@unionco.org

Kristin Hollenbach
Adult Probation Officer
Union County Adult Probation Office
103 S. 2nd Street
Lewisburg, PA 17837
Telephone: (570) 524-3839
Toll Free Telephone: (877) 246-5895
Fax: (570) 524-8745
Email: kristinhollenbach@unionco.org