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How the Court Can Help You Overcome Drug Addiction


Ask yourself the following questions:

1.Have you used drugs other than those needed for medicinal purposes?

2.Do you misuse more than one drug at a time, whether for recreational or medicinal purposes? Do you use them more than once a week?

3.Have you ever had blackouts or flashbacks as a result of drug usage?

4.Have you neglected your family because of the use of drugs?

5.Have you engaged in illegal activities to aide you in obtaining drugs?

6.Have you been arrested because of your use of drugs?

7.Has your drug use contributed to your loss of employment?

8.Do family members and friends complain about your use of drugs? Have they ceased communication and contact with you?

9.Does your drug use make you feel guilty?

10.Have you had medical problems that could be related to your medical use such as memory loss, hepatitis, convulsions and bleeding?

If you answered yes to any of these you currently have a drug addiction or dependency.If you have been arrested and are being prosecuted the Volusia County Drug Court may be able to provide you with some assistance. In 1997 the Volusia County Adult Drug Court program began with the purpose of helping non-violent, felony, and prison bound adult offenders resolve their pending criminal cases by offering them the opportunity to seek life changing help by overcoming their drug addiction or dependency.

Entry into the program is based upon the sentencing court’s assessment of the defendant’s criminal history, substance abuse, screening outcome, amenability to the services of the program, total sentence points, the recommendation of the State Attorney and victim (if applicable) and the defendant’s agreement to enter the program. Adult offenders with non-violent felony offenses including possession of a controlled substance or possession of a prescription medication without a valid script, Grand Theft, and burglary of a structure/conveyance qualify for the program. They must not possess disqualifying prior convictions to violent offenses, drug trafficking, sales, manufacturing or cultivation (except for small amounts of marijuana). Defendant’s seeking entry into the program must also not have pending charges in other jurisdictions, been a previous Drug Court Program graduate within the last three (3) years, been previously adjudicated incompetent or insane or currently suffer from significant mental health problems, undergo methadone or suboxone maintenance treatment, or currently be in violation of conditions of controlled release or parole.

Many individuals believe that drug addiction or dependency is limited to the more commonly used drugs such as marijuana, heroin, methamphetamine (meth, crystal meth), and cocaine, but an increasing number of individuals have become addicted to or dependent on prescription pills. The most commonly abused pills are Oxycodone (Roxys), Hydrocodone, Xanax, and Percocet.

Unfortunately, I meet with individuals almost daily who suffer from drug addiction. More and more I have clients that are severely addicted to pain pills or anti-anxiety mediation.In almost every case the client was introduced to the medication through a valid script from a medical doctor. In many cases the client suffered from a physical injury or a diagnosed mental issue and their doctor prescribed them pain medication or anti-anxiety medication. However, the client becomes addicted to that pill, and in most cases, begins to abuse it. In my experience as a both a former State Prosecutor and a Criminal Defense Attorney I have witnessed how this addiction ruins lives. It can lead to loss of jobs, criminal arrests, lengthy prison sentences, felony convictions, and even death. It not only affects the addicted individual, but it also can devastate families and relationships.

The question becomes one of how can this addiction be stopped?How can this path to destruction end? Often the person has to hit rock bottom before they realize how far the drug has taken control of their life. In many situations, that rock bottom is a criminal arrest. It is in this situation where I can use my law degree and my position as their criminal defense attorney to help that person turn a negative situation like an arrest and prosecution into a positive life changing event.

Over the years I have seen clients make this life changing metamorphosis in drug court.I believe drug court works because it is one of the few environments in the Criminal Justice System where one truly feels they are worthy of that change and a new life. It is an environment of accountability, but also one where those that work in the drug court system have a hand out to help those that make mistakes and want the assistance to keep working towards being clean.

Drug Court forces responsibility upon many that have never been counted on for anything before.It requires attendance at group and individual counseling sessions. There are random drug testing and requires that you attend weekly court appearances in front of the Judge. If you don’t live up to these responsibilities or take drugs you can be taken into custody and spend time in jail thinking about your decisions. Drug Court also creates goals as you move through the phases. Ultimately many can get their criminal cases dismissed if they successfully complete the program. The most important end result is teaching people how to live a clean existence, how to mend broken relationships, and how to move on to hopefully a very successful life.

The bottom line is it changes lives.I am obviously a huge supporter of drug court and I have assisted many clients in beginning this difficult yet life changing program. If you or your loved one has a drug addiction and has been arrested and you would like to find out about how I can assist in exploring the possibility of enrollment in drug court please contact me today to turn this negative situation into hopefully a way to end your addiction and begin leading a clean life.

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