KUNM

Drug Court

Recovery Courts For Teens

Jun 13, 2017
Joe Gratz via Flickr CC

Young people who end up in the court system for substance abuse are at a crucial point in their lives. In many New Mexico communities, recovery courts provide resources for minors to address substance abuse and take advantage of mental health services. One goal is to address drug use before a minor ends up in the adult court system.

Call In Show: Criminal Justice Reform

Jul 29, 2015
pixabay.com via CC / Creative Commons

 

The nation’s prison system is in crisis. Prison and jail populations ballooned to an all-time high, and the number of people on probation and parole has doubled.

Meanwhile, we're spending more on incarceration than we ever have—and most of that money comes out of the states’ pockets.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

After less than two years serving southeastern New Mexico, a behavioral health provider will shutter its programs on March 31, leaving hundreds without services.

What does this mean for Roswell and its courts, which were ordering offenders into treatment there?

Judge Freddie Romero presides over the drug court for juveniles in Chaves County. It’s not what you might imagine. The judge is warm and friendly. The kids who approach the podium with their parents in tow are everyday teenagers—jeans, T shirts, the occasional piercing.

Substance abuse treatment is not available for everyone who needs it in New Mexico, and this shortage is at the root of some tragic altercations with police.

Mike Gomez met me in a park in Albuquerque, holding a framed photo of his son Alan. “He was a good kid, a normal kid,” he said. “He graduated high school on time. He was a Little League All-Star.”