TREATMENT COURTLocation: 100 James Robertson Parkway, Suite 100 Justice A.A. Birch Building Nashville, TN 37219 Phone number: (615) 862-4241 Judge Casey Moreland, Presiding Scott Ross, Program Manager
Drawing on a concept that brought national acclaim at the local criminal court level, the General Sessions Court instituted a special docket for drug offenders in Oct. 2003. Judge Casey Moreland, who gave birth to the idea, presides over the “Treatment Court” each Wednesday at 2 p.m. in Courtroom 4D of the Justice A.A. Birch Building. It is then that certain drug abusers who have been arrested for nonviolent offenses are given opportunities to participate in a three-phase supervised rehabilitation program. But they come of their accord because the program is available only to those who want help for their addictions.
Since its inception, the number of those opting for the treatment program has grown significantly to 75 participants. The court offers an intensive and lengthy program, requiring from 12-18 months to successfully complete. Some find the rules too rigid and opt to serve jail time for their original offenses. Others subject themselves to electronic monitoring, four-times-a-week drug testing, alcohol monitoring and half-way house residency while taking classes in anger management, life skills and job readiness. Classes also are offered to those wishing to earn their GED diplomas.
There are numerous members of the Treatment Court team who play key roles in the recovery of each participant. In addition to Judge Moreland, members of the team include Probation Officers, Public Defender, District Attorney, Case Managers, Electronic Monitoring, the Davidson County Sheriff’s Department, the Metro Police Department and several treatment providers around the Nashville area. Moreland says he is hoping that not only will this court continue to treat drug/alcohol addictions but also will lower the recidivism rate of the original Drug Court.