The Denver DA’s Office strongly supports the Denver Drug Court. It is a specialized court designed to give offenders the responsibility of their substance abuse problem through probation supervision and close judicial oversight. In doing so, Drug Court encourages public safety and individual responsibility, a reduction in crime and an improvement in the quality of life for the participants and their families.
The Drug Court process is designed to move quickly so that offenders can begin treatment and supervision almost immediately.
On average, it takes about three months to process a drug case. In Drug Court, this time frame is reduced to 3 to 5 days. An eligible offender who wants to take part in Drug Court pleads guilty to the charges at second advisement (a hearing held within days of an arrest) and is immediately sentenced to Drug Court supervision.
The probation department conducts an assessment of the offender’s drug problem and a supervision plan is put into place that includes random drug testing, treatment, regular court reviews, community service, fines and restitution, and increasingly severe sanctions for non-compliance. These sanctions can range from a loss of privileges to jail time.
There are numerous benefits of Drug Court. It frees up jail space, it decreases the number of simple possession cases routed to District Court, and in the majority of cases it allows an offender to overcome a substance abuse problem and become a productive member of the community.
How Drug Court works
Sanctions and Incentives
01-16-2013 Drug Courts: 2nd Chance?
On Janurary 16, 2013 Colorado Public Television Channel 12 A discussion on Denver's Drug Court; its impact on society, the economy and its graduates. To see this report, click on the following link: CPT12
In March 2009, an independent evaluation was completed on Denver’s Drug Court. Click here for the final report: 2009 Drug Court Evaluation