Special Programs and Services Victim Impact Panel (VIP) program (Adult Division):
Drunk driving offenders comprise a large category of probationers in most jurisdictions. The Victim Impact Panels’ intent is to bring into focus, in the minds of the offenders, how their actions put other people at risk. It is hoped this program enables offenders, perhaps for the first time, to consider the pain and suffering that drunk driving can cause to other people, and to look beyond what offenders believe to be their own unfortunate situation. If the Victim Impact Panel Program keeps one person from getting behind the wheel of a car after drinking, the program has helped change behavior and potentially saved lives.
The Henry County Court Services Department held their first Victim Impact Panel in November, 1989. Speakers on the panel are victims or family members of a victim of a drunk driving offender. The program is held the first Wednesday of alternate months in the evening at the Courthouse. The program is not open to the general public.
Drug Testing (Adult & Juvenile Division):
The Court Services Department established a drug testing program in April of 1995. Samples are collected from juvenile and adult offenders who are required by the Court as a condition of probation to submit to random urinalysis testing. In addition, the department also conducts drug testing of offenders released on bond if so ordered and of juveniles involved in our diversion/informal probation program. The drug test fees assessed to the participants support the Drug Testing Program.
Electronic Monitoring (Adult Division):
In September of 1993, the Court Services Department implemented electronic monitoring for qualified adult offenders. The focus of our program is as an alternative to incarceration. The scope of electronic monitoring sanctions is to be restricted to offenders who would otherwise be jailed. The actual selection of offenders into the program is done only by Court Order and only after the Court Services Department has conducted a thorough screening as to the potential participant’s appropriateness for the program. The program is supported by the electronic monitoring fees assessed to the participants.
Court Referral Program (Adult Division):
This program involves monitoring administrative (non-supervised) Court Supervision/Conditional Discharge cases to ensure compliance with special conditions, most commonly treatment and drug testing. The Court Services Department is not mandated by statute to monitor these types of cases; however, our Department does this to ensure these offenders report to the community services/treatment agencies indicated by their offense and the court order. We track and monitor these cases to verify that the offenders complete all treatment requirements. If they do not follow through as required by their court order, their case is referred back to court for further sanctions.
DUI Specialized Supervision Program (Adult Division):
Based on the DUI offender’s prior arrest history and the results of an evaluation by a licensed agency, the Probation/Court Services Department can identify those who are at greater risk of repeating the offense. The case can then be assigned to the DUI Supervision Officer’s caseload for monitoring and strict enforcement of the Courts’ Order; appropriate and expedient referral of the offender for necessary counseling and treatment; reinforcement and support for compliance with conditions; and prompt identification of those offenders who are not complying with treatment and require further sanction of the court. This program is not designed to provide primary counseling services. Rather, it is designed for identification, monitoring, intervention, and referral to treatment providers during the initial portion of the period of supervision. The design of the program allows the DUI Probation Officer to assist the offender in beginning his/her recovery but places the responsibility for continuing this process on the offender.
Intake Screening/Diversion Program (Juvenile Division):
This program receives and investigates referrals from local law enforcement agencies regarding youths age 16 and under alleged to have committed a crime. The Juvenile Intake Screening Officer conducts an investigation which determines if the minor can be held accountable and receive appropriate services and supervision without court intervention. The goal is to prevent further delinquent behavior and effectively minimize the depth and duration of the minor’s involvement in the juvenile justice system.
Home Detention Program (Juvenile Division):
The juvenile home detention program provides a cost effective alternative to secure detention for juveniles through intensive monitoring and advocacy while they are pending ruling and disposition. The program provides for 24 hours a day intake and assessment. Youth participants and their families are also provided case management referrals and linkages with community based services. The home confinement is monitored through random phone calls made daily and periodic home visits. The goal of this program is to prevent unnecessary placement of youth into detention facilities and successfully link them to community services and resources to lessen the probability of further delinquent behavior.
The Henry County Court Services Department –Juvenile Division collects restitution for victims of juvenile crime. This program holds the juvenile offenders accountable and provides financial reparation to victims. Restitution collected from juveniles amounts to thousands of dollars annually.