Report Touts Drug Courts’ Low Cost, High Success in Curbing Recidivism

December 3, 2010 § Leave a comment

In 8 years, drug courts have saved millions, cut recidivism and transformed the lives of thousands of nonviolent offenders by helping them keep away from substance abuse, the NJ Administrative Office of the Courts says. Drug courts are designed to break the cycle of addiction and crime through intensive supervision, frequent drug testing and court appearances. One of the biggest successes noted in the report is that recidivism for drug court graduates is far lower than for defendants who go to prison. Of the roughly 1,300 people who have graduated from drug courts, 16% have been arrested for a new, indictable offense and 8% have been convicted. In comparison, 54% of drug offenders released from prison are re-arrested for indictable offenses and 43% are convicted. Another success is monetary. It costs $38,900 to incarcerate an inmate in NJ but only $11,379 to shepherd an offender through drug court. (Charles Toutant, NJ Law Journal)

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