Therapeutic Specialty Courts
District Court Therapeutic Specialty Courts
Clark County District Court offers four Therapeutic Specialty Court programs, Substance Abuse Court, Veterans Court, DUI Court, and Mental Health Court. Therapeutic Specialty Court programs offer treatment and other recovery support services in Clark County to help participants treat underlying substance abuse, mental health and/or co-occurring disorders while under the supervision of the court. The mission for each program is simple: help participants to get re-established in the community; improve skills and self-sufficiency; reduce cycle of addiction and crime; and help restore and reunite families.
These programs are based on 10 key components of effective drug courts outlined by the National Association of Drug Court Professionals, Therapeutic Jurisprudence and evidence-based best practices in substance abuse treatment.
Revamped Veterans Therapeutic Court Offers Fresh Hope to Veterans
Caught Up in the Criminal Justice System
In the innovative veterans’ treatment court model, one judge handles the cases of numerous veterans and addresses them during the same court session, restoring some of the structure and camaraderie found in the military but often lost on the home front. The judge is surrounded by an interdisciplinary team (prosecution, defense, treatment providers, probation, law enforcement, Department of Veterans Affairs representatives, and a team of volunteer veteran mentors) all working toward the same goal: to help each veteran achieve recovery and get their lives back on track. (https://justiceforvets.org/whats-at-stake/)
Clark County’s Veterans Therapeutic Court (VETCO) was established in 2011 to serve veterans with post-plea misdemeanor convictions on the District Court level. To date, 55 veterans have graduated from the court. We’re pleased to announce major changes to the program to allow us to serve even more veterans.
Beginning 06/03/2019, VETCO is transitioning to a pre-plea model that will also accept participants with felony charges from Superior Court. Veterans who successfully complete the pre-plea program will have their charges dismissed with prejudice. The court will still also accept post-plea District Court referrals. These changes are in line with those made to Clark County Mental Health Court in 2018. The VETCO Team would like to thank the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Vancouver City Attorney’s Office, and our many other stakeholders for help making this vision a reality.
We’ll hold an informational meeting on 06/12/2019 from noon-1pm to share information with defense attorneys, prosecutors, and others who are interested in the referral process and program changes. Courtroom location for the meeting to be determined.
In our mission to Leave No Veteran Behind, we’re also working on reestablishing a volunteer veteran mentor program. For more information on how you can help with the mentor program, or for general information on VETCO, contact coordinator Beth Robinson at (564) 397-2431 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Referral and Opt-In Forms for Attorneys
TSC Forms for Participants
More Information on District Court Programs
Mental Health Court Participants' Handbook - under construction!
DUI Court brochure (PDF)
For more information about any of the Therapeutic Specialty Courts, please contact Beth Robinson at (564) 397-2431 or email Beth.Robinson@clark.wa.gov.