Specialty Courts

Drug Treatment Court

In October 1997, the 36th District Court established its Drug Treatment Court pilot project. The pilot project was a combined effort of the Court, the City of Detroit Health Department, The Detroit City Council, The Mayor's Office, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency, and the Detroit Police Department.

In 1998, the Court was awarded grant funds from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Drug Courts Program Office, to implement a Drug Treatment Court. Offenders electing to participate in the program are given the opportunity to submit to substance abuse treatment and to comply with all other conditions imposed by the Judge and Case Managers. Participants are required to appear for all scheduled status hearings, submit to urinalysis, and attend all treatment sessions. They may also be referred to enrichment programs including but not limited to job readiness and training, parenting classes, and GED/Adult Basic Education.

The primary goal of the Drug Treatment Court is to identify substance abusing offenders and to involve them in substance abuse treatment.  The Drug Treatment Court is designed to hold offenders accountable for their behavior while providing them with rehabilitative services necessary to maintain a law-abiding lifestyle.  Participation in Drug Treatment Court requires a commitment of 12 months to two years and includes three phases: Phase 1 – Stabilization, Phase 2 – Transition, and Phase 3 – Maintenance.  There is a graduation ceremony upon successful completion of the program.

Veterans Treatment Court

The 36th District Veterans Treatment Court was established in November 2010, and was the second Veterans Court in the State of Michigan.  The Veterans Treatment Court is designed to assist veterans with unique challenges with mental health and substance abuse, without having to experience any delays and to connect the veteran with available resources in a timely manner.

Veterans Treatment Court is committed to assisting with early intervention, treatment, and rehabilitation of those defendants who have served in the military services.  A veteran in contact with the criminal justice system can be appropriately diverted from a jail sentence and into mental health and/or substance abuse treatment.  Appropriate referrals and assistance with educational and employment goals may also be a part of the veteran’s sentence and plan of supervision.  The 36th District Veterans Treatment Court also works in conjunction with the John Dingell Veterans Administration Medical Center to offer ancillary services to the veterans and works in collaboration with the Case Managers to achieve those goals.  Participation in Veterans Treatment Court requires a commitment of 12 months to two years and includes three levels: Level 1 – Stabilization, Level 2 – Transition, and Level 3 – Maintenance.

Street Outreach Court Detroit

Street Outreach Court Detroit (SOCD) 
is a Specialty Court established specifically to serve homeless individuals with pending cases in the 36th District Court.  The Court partners with numerous governmental agencies, nonprofit, and legal organizations to offer homeless individuals the opportunity to resolve civil infractions and certain misdemeanors. The Court’s intervention is intended to address the underlying root causes which contribute to  homelessness, while resolving their pending legal matters.

Participation is voluntary and offenders are screened by the Probation Department to ensure they meet the criteria for acceptance into SOCD.  Offenders are guided by social service professionals to create an Action Plan with the intent of securing housing.  Participants are also challenged to attain additional goals and objectives which may include completion of job training, education, drug rehabilitation or mental health treatment, and community service through the Court's Work Program.

SOCD hearings are held at the Capuchin Soup Kitchen’s Meldrum location. Legal representation is provided free of charge by Street Democracy, a nonprofit organization.