Office of the State's Attorney for Baltimore City

 For Immediate Release 7/6/15

 The Baltimore City Circuit Court hosted a graduation for 17 participants in its Drug Treatment Court program.

The Drug Treatment Court is a minimum 18 month long diversionary program that offers drug addicted offenders an opportunity to seek treatment for their addiction, stay sober, and find work.

Baltimore City Health Commissioner, Dr. Leana Wen, was the keynote speaker for the event. Judge Sylvester Cox, one of the judges who administer the program alongside Judge Ellen Heller, provided opening and closing remarks.

“Some of the graduates spoke during the ceremony. There were tears from both men and women as they shared their stories about what it took to graduate from the program.” Gregg Solomon, the Assistant State’s Attorney responsible for referring defendants to the program and monitoring the progress.

Solomon says there are typically ups and downs with participants. She says the State’s Attorney’s Office does its best to work with participants and keep them in the program.

“Sometimes they relapse, or have trouble with their employment situations. We do what we can to keep them in the program— but sometimes we have to send them to jail for a few days or weeks, but we want everyone to finish the program and get clean.” Solomon said.

Families and support staff attended the ceremony in support of their loved ones. Each participant received commendations from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Sen. Nathaniel McFadden, and the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

“These are the types of programs that are going to turn our City around. People need help beating this awful disease, and I’m happy that the Drug Treatment Court is willing and able to support these individuals. A full year of sobriety is no small accomplishment. I’m proud of this graduating class and I hope that they are able to stay sober.” State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby said.

Recently, Mosby launched a diversionary program of her own called Aim to B’More. The program was developed for first-time non-violent felony offenders. Participants agree to take probation before judgement for their crimes, in exchange for community service, academic coursework, vocational training, and ultimately employment. When the participants graduate their records are expunged.