Grayson County plans teen drug court - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Grayson County plans teen drug court

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SHERMAN, Texas -- Grayson County Commissioners are one step closer to establishing a teen drug court.

The county has had a teen court for several years, but staffers who deal with juveniles said it wasn't addressing the issues specific to teens with drug problems.

"People who had substance abuse had difficulty with regular programming and ultimately needed treatment outside of the facility," explained probation officer Greg Sumpter.

That's why the county's Department of Juvenile Services is starting the teen drug court, which will include a 6- to 9-month program using a combination of community service and treatment options.

"Other issues that they're trying to deal with -- either it's family issues or maybe some mental health issues that they're trying to self-medicate -- but it's trying to find the right service for the problem that's presented," said juvenile probation officer Lisa Tomlinson.

The program will consist of collaborative groups of 12 who will then see a judge and work together to overcome their addictions.

"We're hoping that their needs get met, they become productive members of their family, of the community, and ultimately they don't come back and need our services," Sumpter said.

The drug court program will also include counseling and drug-testing, and it will mandate parental involvement.

"A lot of the crimes we see teenagers involved in are around their drug use and their drug habits, and so it's all intertwined together," said Sherman police spokesman Sgt. Brett Mullen.

The court is expected to begin operations in October.

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