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  • Judge M. Lauren Lemmon
  • Judge Emile R. St. Pierre
  • Judge Michele Morel
  • Jackie Cristina, Coordinator
  • Juanita Marino and Christina Lewis - Public Defender Attorneys
  • Juan A. Byrd, Assistant District Attorney
  • Gregory J. Johnson, Compliance Officer
  • Jason Galjour, Department of Corrections - Probation and Parole
  • Jizette Scott, M.A., LPC-S, LMFT, NCC- St. Charles Community Health Center

Mission Statement
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The St. Charles Parish Drug Court has been established to enhance the quality of life and to provide a safer community, thereby reducing social costs related to substance abuse. The primary mission of the Drug Court is to break the cycle of addiction and rehabilitate substance-abusing offenders by utilizing governmental agencies and community resources.


Goals and Objectives
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  • Goal No. 1 - To provide timely court intervention, screening, and assessment to non-violent substance abusing offenders by participation in a court supervised program of treatment.
    Objectives
    :
    • Of the eligible offenders referred to the program, 90% will receive substance abuse evaluations within 10 days of referral to the Drug Court program; 100% will receive substance abuse evaluations within 30 days of referral to the Drug Court program.
    • 90% of Drug Court participants will receive court intervention within 10 days of referral to the Drug Court program; 100% of participants will receive court intervention within 30 days of referral to the Drug Court program – as measured by attendance at first Drug Court session.

  • Goal No. 2 - The Drug Court team will provide effective and efficient court supervision to participants in the Drug Court Program.
    Objectives:
    • 100 percent of the Drug Court participants will receive intensive court supervision including regular hearings, tracking of progress, and progressive sanctions for failures.
    • 75 percent of the Drug Court participants will complete treatment successfully.
    • 100 percent of the participants who successfully graduate will have a long-term sobriety plan, including support group attendance or other activities.

  • Goal No. 3 - To provide a comprehensive integrated program of drug treatment and rehabilitation services to non-violent substance abusing offenders in St. Charles Parish.
    Objectives:
    • 100 percent of participants in the Drug Court Program will receive inpatient or outpatient substance abuse treatment as measured by treatment provider verification reports.
    • 90 percent of the participants eligible to work will be employed or in training upon graduation from the Drug Court Program as measured by case management employment verification reports.
    • 50 percent of the Drug Court participants with no high school degree will earn a GED as measured by educational verification reports.

  • Goal No. 4 - To enhance collaboration between the judicial system, law enforcement, substance abuse treatment agencies, health care providers, social services, mental health interests, and public policy makers.
    Objectives:
    • To increase coordination among law enforcement, the courts and treatment providers as measured by attendance records at Drug Court sessions and other Drug Court related meetings.
    • To reduce overlap and duplication of services.

  • Goal No. 5 - To promote public safety by reducing recidivism in non-violent substance abusing offenders in St. Charles Parish.
    Objective:
    • To reduce recidivism among participants who complete the program by 50 percent.

  • Goal No. 6 - To reduce taxpayer costs for the criminal justice system.
    Objective:
    • To increase savings to the taxpayer by reducing incarceration costs for Drug Court participants.


Eligibility Criteria
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  • Adults age 17 and older and a resident of St. Charles Parish
  • Must have entered a guilty plea to one of the following enumerated crimes:
    • DWI
    • Possession / distribution / possession with intent to distribute of CDS
    • Addiction driven property crimes
  • Any probation violation for one of the above enumerated offenses with a positive drug test
  • Post plea/post adjudication and probation for a five year period


Disqualifier/Qualifier Criteria

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Offense Disqualifier
Any conviction of a violent crime (R.S. 14:2):

  • Solicitation for murder
  • First degree murder
  • Second degree murder
  • Manslaughter
  • Aggravated battery
  • Second degree battery
  • Aggravated assault
  • Mingling harmful substances
  • Aggravated rape
  • Forcible rape
  • Simple rape
  • Sexual battery
  • Second degree sexual battery
  • Intentional exposure to AIDS virus
  • Aggravated kidnapping
  • Second degree kidnapping
  • Simple kidnapping
  • Aggravated arson
  • Aggravated criminal damage to property
  • Aggravated burglary
  • Armed robbery
  • First degree robbery
  • Simple robbery
  • Purse snatching
  • Extortion
  • Assault by drive-by shooting
  • Aggravated crime against nature
  • Carjacking
  • Illegal use of weapons or dangerous instrumentalities
  • Terrorism
  • Aggravated second degree battery
  • Aggravated assault upon a peace officer with a firearm
  • Aggravated assault with a firearm
  • Armed robbery; use of firearm; additional penalty
  • Second degree robbery
  • Disarming of a peace officer
  • Stalking
  • Second degree cruelty to juveniles
  • Aggravated flight from an officer
  • Aggravated incest
  • Battery of a police officer
  • Trafficking of children for sexual purposes
  • Human trafficking
  • Home invasion

Offender Disqualifier

  • Anyone who has not obtained the age of 17.
  • Non-resident of St. Charles Parish.

Offense Qualifier

  • DWI
  • Possession/distribution/possession with intent to distribute CDS
  • Addiction driven property crimes
  • Any probation violation for one of the above enumerated offenses with a positive drug screen

Offender Qualifier

  • Substance abuse/addiction issue
  • Resident of St. Charles Parish
  • 17 years of age or older


Referral Policy
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The District Attorney’s Office, Judge, and defense attorney will determine defendant’s legal eligibility based on existing 29th JDC Drug Court criteria and will contact the Drug Court Coordinator to schedule a Drug Court Assessment. The Coordinator will review the rap sheet located in the Clerk’s file to determine that the referral is a qualified candidate for Drug Court and schedule the defendant’s assessment for the next available date.

The defendant is then notified to appear in Drug Court the following week for assessment. The Drug Court Coordinator will conduct a Drug Court Assessment and, if the defendant is still eligible for Drug Court up to that point, schedule an appointment for the defendant at St. Charles Community Health Center for a substance abuse assessment. Upon completion of the substance abuse assessment, the defendant will be placed on the Drug Court Docket for the following week.  A decision is made by the Drug Court Team as to whether or not the defendant will be accepted into the program. Whether the team accepts or denies the defendant entry into the program, the Drug Court Coordinator will notify the referring division Judge, Assistant District Attorney, and defense attorney of the Drug Court Team’s decision in writing.

Upon acceptance, the defendant will enter a guilty plea in the referring division of court, receive a 5 year suspended jail sentence and be placed on 5 years active probation with a condition of probation to successfully complete the Drug Court Program. 


Program Phases
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Phase I – Stabilization and Engagement

  • Minimum 8 weeks
  • 7.5 hours of group weekly
  • Urine screens three times weekly
  • 3 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings weekly
  • Court each Wednesday
  • 20 hours work or community service weekly
  • Individual counseling or anger management as mandated
  • Orientation for community service at St. Charles Parish Hospital within 30 days of acceptance into Drug Court
  • Program fee of $25 per week

Requirements for advancement to Phase II:

  1. Must at lease obtain a temporary AA/NA or 12-Step sponsor and provide documentation of self-help meetings attended
  2. Clean urine screens and/or breath tests for 30 days
  3. Complete life story and MRT steps 1-3
  4. Must be sanction free for 30 days
  5. Payment of all program fees for Phase I (Phase advancement may be made with a minimum $100 fee balance)

Phase II: Behavior Modification and Cognitive Restructuring

  • Minimum 16 weeks
  • 4 hours of group weekly
  • Urine screens twice weekly
  • 3 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings weekly
  • Court once a week for 4 weeks and thereafter every 2 weeks 
  • 20 hours weekly employment or community service
  • Individual counseling or anger management as mandated
  • Program fee of $25 per week 

Requirements for advancement to Phase III:

  1. Provide documented list of self-help meetings attended
  2. Identify a role model
  3. Must have obtained a permanent AA/NA or 12-Step sponsor
  4. Completion of steps 9-12 in MRT workbook
  5. Payment of all program fees for Phase II
  6. Minimum 30 days of clean UA's and/or breath tests
  7. Must be sanction free for 30 days

Phase III: Relapse Prevention and Transition

  • Minimum of 16 weeks
  • 2 hours of group once weekly
  • 3 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings weekly
  • Begin working steps in Staying Quit workbook
  • Urine screens weekly
  • Court every 2 weeks
  • Be evaluated by and enroll in GED program if no high school diploma (GED attendance will be substituted for 1 AA meeting per week)
  • 20 hours employment or community service weekly
  • Program fee of $25 per week

Requirements for advancement to Phase IV:

  1.  Must be a role model for clients in Phases I & II 
  2. Documented attendance of 3 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings weekly 
  3. Have a written plan to prepare for slips
  4. Have a list of triggers and identify patterns that cause you to slip into old behavior and develop specific interventions to change the patterns
  5. Have a list of phone numbers to use in time of weakness
  6. Must be employed full time or be enrolled in G.E.D., college, or vo-tech school
  7. Payment of all program  fees for Phase III
  8. Develop outside relationships unrelated to using or abusing alcohol or drugs
  9. Clean UA’s and/or breath tests for minimum of 8 weeks
  10. Completion of Staying Quit workbook
  11. Must be sanction free for 30 days
Phase IV - Transition
  • Minimum 16 weeks
  • 1 hour group counseling weekly
  • 2 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings weekly
  • Weekly urine screens
  • Must be employed full time or be enrolled in G.E.D., college, or vo-tech school
  • Court every 2 weeks
  • Program fee of $25 per week

Requirements for advancement to Phase V:

  1. Must be a role model for clients in Phases I, II, and III
  2. Documented attendance of 2 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings weekly
  3. Continues AA/NA or 12-Step work and be actively working with your AA/NA or 12-Step sponsor
  4. Must be employed full time or be enrolled in G.E.D., college, or vo-tech school
  5. Clean UA’s and/or breath tests during entire phase
  6. Payment in full of all treatment fees for Phase IV
  7. Must be sanction fee for 30 days

Phase V - Graduation Preparation 

  • Minimum 3 months 
  • 1 hour group counseling bi-weekly
  • Documented attendance of 2 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings per week
  • Attend monthly Alumni Meeting (will count as 1 AA/NA or 12-Step Meeting)
  • Weekly urine screens
  • Mentor Phases I, II or III once per month until graduation in exchange for 2 AA/NA or 12-Step meetings per month
  • Must be employed full time or be enrolled in G.E.D., college or vo-tech school
  • Court appearance on the first Wednesday of every month
  • Must remain sanction free entire phase
  • Payment of $15.00 per week Phase V UA fee 

Upon completion of Phase V, clients are placed on Continuing Care status until the next scheduled graduation.  Requirements of the Continuing Care phase are as follows:

Continuing Care

  • Payment of $15.00 per week Phase V UA fee
  • Minimum of 4 random drug screens per month
  • Court appearance every 2 months on the first Wednesday of the month
  • Attend monthly Alumni Meeting (3rd Thursday of each month)
  • Document attendance of 1 AA/NA or 12-Step meeting per month
  • Call drug screen reporting line daily
  • Mentoring lower phases - optional
  • Must remain sanction free the entire phase

Requirements for Graduation

  1. Demonstrate ability to be fully responsible for yourself and your behavior
  2. Be aware of the impact of your behavior on family, friends and society
  3. Make a report to the Drug Court team on the impact of Drug Court on your life
  4. Provide constructive feedback about the Drug Court program (i.e., what worked best for you; what gave you trouble)
  5. Be a model of productive behavior and provide support and encouragement to other Drug Court clients
  6. Payment in full of drug screen fees for Phase V

Clients will be subject to random urine screens at any time during Phase V and Continuing Care. In the event of a positive drug screen, missed treatment meeting, or missed self-help meeting, the client will be referred to appear in Drug Court on the next Drug Court date following the violation. Treatment will make a phase demotion recommendation (either Phase II or Phase III) to the Drug Court team; however the final decision is made by the team.

During all phases of the program, you will be subject to random home visits or visits to your place of work, by your probation officer and/or Drug Court Compliance Officer.

You may be asked to provide a urine screen and/or breath test at any time during the program. Failure/refusal to submit a urine screen or refusal to give a breath test will be considered an automatic positive screen, and you will receive an immediate sanction decided upon by the Drug Court team.  Clients will be billed for each positive drug screen and payment is expected at your next court appearance.

If you do not have a high school diploma or GED equivalent, you will be ordered to enroll in and complete the GED program in lieu of 24 hours work or community service.

Incentives and Sanctions

Incentives are rewards for responsible and positive behaviors.  These rewards could range from verbal praise in court from the Judge, applause, candy, advancement to the next treatment phase, quarterly prize drawings, Client of the Week recognition and recognition coins.

Sanction means that if you fail to follow through with your responsibilities, there will be consequences.  There is a wide range of sanctions available that the Judge could impose ranging from verbal reprimand, phase demotion, community service, curfew, house arrest, essays, one or more weekends in jail, to dismissal from the program and revocation. 

Incentives and sanctions are decided upon by the Drug Court team and are delivered on a graduated and case by case basis, depending on the infraction.

Program Fees

Program fees are payable to the St. Charles Parish Drug Court.  All program fees must be paid by money order.

Aftercare/Re-entry

In an effort to provide continued support for maintaining your sobriety after graduation, effective July 1, 2009, all Drug Court graduates are required to attend one monthly Alumni meeting for 12 months following graduation.  Said attendance at Alumni meetings is an integral part of the Drug Court program.  Successful completion of Alumni meetings is required in order to satisfy your condition of probation mandating successful completion of Drug Court.

Alumni meetings are held at St. Charles Community Health Center, 201 Paul Maillard Road, Luling, LA on the third Thursday of each month.  Meetings are from 6:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.

Phase V and Continuing Care clients are required to attend the monthly Alumni Meeting in exchange for 1 AA meeting per month.  

Relapse Policy
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The St. Charles Parish Drug Court recognizes that relapse is a part of the disease process and may occur during the treatment process. In the context of this program, relapse is defined as a return to use of drugs or alcohol after a period of abstinence. In this program, relapse falls into one of two categories: (a) the individual is motivated for recovery and is cooperative with the treatment staff at the time of relapse, or (b) the individual is non-cooperative with the treatment process and is no longer a candidate for treatment.

Relapse falling into the first category is considered a treatment issue and the Drug Court relies on the recommendations of the treatment team as to how best support the client through this setback.  Referral to a 28-day inpatient program or long-term residential program is an option if a client is having difficulty succeeding in outpatient treatment through Drug Court.

Relapse falling into the second category is considered a legal issue and the Drug Court will rely on the recommendations of the Compliance Officer, District Attorney, and treatment representative. All relapses are reviewed on an individual basis by the entire Drug Court team.

Suggested sanctions for relapses will be as follows:  

  • Community service
  • Weekends in jail
  • Jail pending placement in detox/inpatient treatment facility (28-day or long term residential treatment)

Sanctions for “stalls” are the same as for those “dirty” drug tests.

In the event a client consistently tests positive for alcohol or drugs, and/or is non-compliant with the rules governing Drug Court, the client could face revocation of their probation and be ordered to serve the jail sentence as outlined in the plea agreement.

Moral Reconation Therapy

Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT) treatment is held on Tuesday and Friday evenings during the first part of the regularly scheduled Phase group meeting.  An MRT book fee of $28.00 will be charged to each client upon acceptance to drug court.  You will be expected to complete your life story and complete MRT steps 1-3 during Phase I, and MRT steps 4-12 before promotion to Phase III. 

Clients are responsible for completing the Staying Quit workbook while participating in Phase III.  The cost of the Staying Quit workbook is $12.00 and will be charged to each client as the workbook is assigned.

If a counselor feels a client would benefit from competing the Thinking For Good workbook, a workbook fee of $12.00 will be charged to the client. 

In the event any of your workbooks are damaged or lost, you will be charged an additional $28.00 for the MRT workbook and/or $12.00 for the Thinking for Good or Staying Quit workbook.

Drug Testing

All drug tests collected at the St. Charles Community Health Center or in the field by your Probation/Compliance Officer are sent to Norchem Laboratory for testing.  Clients are responsible for costs associated with their positive drug screen results.  All urine specimens are screened for the following substances:

  • Amphetamine/Methamphetamine
  • Barbituates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Cocaine
  • Methadone
  • Opiates
  • PCP
  • Ocycodone
  • THC
  • EtG/EtS

Randomly, St. Charles Community Health Center will screen for additional drugs of abuse utilizing services of Norchem Laboratory.  Those drugs (including confirmation) are:

  • Soma
  • Tramadol
  • Buprenorphine
  • Trazadone
  • Designer Stimulants/Bath Salts (includes MDVP, Mephedrone, Cathinone, Methcathinone)
  • Spice/K2

If a client's drug screen is positive, the client has the right to request a GCMS confirmation.  The confirmation fee is due within 24 hours of the challenge and must be paid by money order to the Drug Court Coordinator.  Upon receipt of client's payment, Norchem will be notified to run the GCMS confirmation test. 


 The St. Charles Parish Drug Court's goal is to keep an individual in treatment and provide Drug Court support for as long as possible without sabatoging the treatment of other clients.

Drug Court Contacts
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Hon. Emile R. St. Pierre – Division C

Hon. Michele Morel – Division E

Hon. Lauren Lemmon – Division D

Juan Byrd
Assistant District Attorney
29th Judicial District
P. O. Box 680
Hahnville, LA 70057
Phone: (985) 783-6263
Fax: (985) 783-6526 

Jizette Scott 
M.A., LPC-S, LMFT, NCC
St. Charles Community Health Center
201 Paul Maillard Road
Luling, LA 70070
Phone: (985) 331-0046
Fax: (985) 331-0076

Juanita Marino
Attorney at Law
P.O. Box 129
Norco, LA  70079
Phone: (985) 764-1193
Fax: (985) 764-9213

Christina Lewis
Attorney at Law
13309 River Road
Luling, LA 70070
Phone: (985) 785-6812
Fax: (985) 785-6831

Jackie C. Cristina

Drug Court Coordinator
29th Judicial District Court
P. O. Box 424
Hahnville, LA 70057
Phone: (985) 783-3216
Fax: (985) 783-3205

Gregory Johnson
Compliance Officer
29th Judicial District Court
P. O. Box 424
Hahnville, LA 70057
Phone: (985) 783-3216
Fax: (985) 783-3205

Jason Galjour
Department of Corrections
Probation and Parole
P. O. Box 878
Thibodaux, LA 70302-0878
Phone: (985) 447-0932
Fax: (985) 447-0827

Last updated: 7/3/2013 11:23:07 AM