Anyone who is arrested and faces criminal charges in Texas must consider how to effectively address these allegations. A conviction can have a negative aftermath regardless of a person’s age and situation, but it is especially worrisome for a juvenile. If the case is related to drugs, it is important for the parents and the juvenile to be aware of juvenile drug court and how it works.
What a juvenile drug court does in a criminal case
For juveniles, there are legal options that can be explored to avoid long-term consequences. In drug court, there might be alternatives for treatment in lieu of punishment. Of course, this depends on the drug crime itself. An example of how drug courts will try to help juveniles instead of penalizing them is SOAR (Sobriety Over Addiction and Relapse) in Harris County. It is specifically tailored to assess the issues that might have led to the drug problems. That can include difficult family life and circumstances.
It is up to probation officers and other professionals to determine if the juvenile can benefit from this type of program. A treatment protocol will be initiated. It is referred to as multi-systemic therapy (MST). The comprehensive plan tries to mitigate what could have served as a catalyst to the drug activity to begin with. The family and community is often integrated into the juvenile’s individualized program. In addition to preventing incarceration and the negative impact a conviction can have on higher education, a military career and seeking gainful employment, it is shown to improve schoolwork and provide drug-free coping skills. This may be a wise strategy for juvenile drug crimes.
Juveniles and parents should consider juvenile drug court programs
These juvenile courts have been shown to be successful and are also in Tarrant and Collin counties. After the arrest, it is easy to be discouraged and wonder how to prevent the substance abuse problem from getting worse. Having professional advice can yield information about these programs and could potentially open a pathway to prevent more serious charges and an escalation.