Drug Court success paves way for Criminal Justice Reform - KOTA Territory News

Drug Court success paves way for Criminal Justice Reform

Posted:

Tuesday, the Northern Hills Drug Court saw three more people graduate, a number that's expected to grow very soon.

It's an alternative to locking up repeat offenders that could save the state millions. Drug court proves successful and the program could soon expand across South Dakota.
 
Including the most recent graduates, a total of 30 people have avoided prison, pledging to lead a drug free life.

South Dakota currently has only five drug courts.

Judge Jerome Eckrich says approximately 87 percent of female inmates and 84 percent of male inmates who entered the corrections system in 2010 were diagnosed with a drug or alcohol dependency.

And 60 percent of those who have graduated, said they have not used drugs 6 months later.

 
"It's actually a sign of the times. This is what we can expect to see across the state. If you want something easy go to prison. If you want something hard, come into drug court," said Eckrich.
 
"It changed my entire life. I've had to learn things that I never thought I could. I didn't work before, I never had to, I had to teach myself how to keep a job," said graduate Chance Williams.
 
Judge Eckrich says Governor Daugaard is expected to sign the Criminal Justice Reform Bill Wednesday the 6th.

That bill is expected to allow the number of drug courts in South Dakota to double by next year.

  • Local News - KOTA TerritoryLocal News KOTA TerritoryMore>>

  • Rapid City DOC and police look for missing inmate

    Rapid City DOC and police look for missing inmate

    Rapid City DOC and police look for missing inmate

    Rapid City, S.D.- Department of Corrections staff members and local law enforcement are searching for a missing state prison inmate in Rapid City.Inmate Paul Trejo walked away from the Rapid City Minimum Unit overnight.Trejo is a 26-year-old Native American male with brown hair and brown eyes. He is 5-feet 10-inches tall and weighs approximately 245 pounds.Trejo is currently serving a 10-year sentence with two years suspended for third-degree burglary out of Butte County.Anyone who sees Trejo...
    Rapid City, S.D.- Department of Corrections staff members and local law enforcement are searching for a missing state prison inmate in Rapid City.Inmate Paul Trejo walked away from the Rapid City Minimum Unit overnight.Trejo is a 26-year-old Native American male with brown hair and brown eyes. He is 5-feet 10-inches tall and weighs approximately 245 pounds.Trejo is currently serving a 10-year sentence with two years suspended for third-degree burglary out of Butte County.Anyone who sees Trejo...
  • Women dies after fall while climbing Falling Rock

    Woman dies after fall while climbing Falling Rock

    Woman dies after fall while climbing Falling Rock

    Pennington County, S.D.- A 39 year old woman has died as a result of injuries sustained from a fall while rock climbing this afternoon.At 5:00pm, Sheriff's Deputies were dispatched to Falling Rock for a report of an injured rock climber. Members of the Pennington County Search and Rescue team also responded and were able to extricate the victim. She was then transported by Life Flight to Rapid City Regional Hospital where she was pronounced dead.The Johnson Siding Fire Department, Rapid City ...
    Pennington County, S.D.- A 39 year old woman has died as a result of injuries sustained from a fall while rock climbing this afternoon.At 5:00pm, Sheriff's Deputies were dispatched to Falling Rock for a report of an injured rock climber. Members of the Pennington County Search and Rescue team also responded and were able to extricate the victim. She was then transported by Life Flight to Rapid City Regional Hospital where she was pronounced dead.The Johnson Siding Fire Department, Rapid City ...
  • KOTA Territory churches prepare for an early morning Easter celebration

    KOTA Territory churches prepare for an early morning Easter celebration

    People will be up, bright and early Sunday at Mount Rushmore for a special church service at the amphitheater.
    People will be up, bright and early Sunday at Mount Rushmore for a special church service at the amphitheater.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • New 24-hour recycling center replaces old Fairmont site

    New 24-hour recycling center replaces old Fairmont site

    You’ll have to go the extra mile if you want to be eco-friendly. The old Fairmont site where people use to drop off their recyclables and yard waste is now closed. It's been replaced with a new 24-hour facility on Highway 79 at the entrance to the landfill. Karl Merbach, superintendent of the Solid Waste Operations, said the city decided to take the money it would have used to repair the Fairmont site and build the new facility. "We think it's a great site. We have lights, we have security c...
    You’ll have to go the extra mile if you want to be eco-friendly. The old Fairmont site where people use to drop off their recyclables and yard waste is now closed. It's been replaced with a new 24-hour facility on Highway 79 at the entrance to the landfill. Karl Merbach, superintendent of the Solid Waste Operations, said the city decided to take the money it would have used to repair the Fairmont site and build the new facility. "We think it's a great site. We have lights, we have security c...
  • Woman dies in rock climbing incident in SD

    Woman dies in rock climbing incident in SD

    Authorities say a 39-year-old woman has died as a result of injuries sustained from a fall while rock climbing in western South Dakota.
    Authorities say a 39-year-old woman has died as a result of injuries sustained from a fall while rock climbing in western South Dakota.
  • Rapid City man charged with felony child abuse

    Rapid City man charged with felony child abuse

    A Rapid City man is being charged for allegedly "hitting, spanking and kicking" a nine-year-old child.Jamey Brewer, 38, faces a felony count of child abuse and misdemeanor simple assault.If convicted,
    Jamey Brewer, 38, faces a felony count of child abuse and misdemeanor simple assault.
Powered by WorldNow

518 St. Joseph St.
Rapid City, SD 57701

Telephone: 605.342.2000
Fax: 605.342.7305

Couldn't find what you were looking for?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - WorldNow and KOTA. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.