McDowell opening 16th juvenile drug court in W.Va. - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

McDowell opening 16th juvenile drug court in W.Va.

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WELCH, W.Va. (AP) -- Supreme Court Chief Justice Brent Benjamin is in McDowell County to mark the opening of a new Juvenile Drug Court.

The ceremony Monday afternoon in Welch also includes Circuit Judge Rudolph Murensky.

The state's 16th juvenile drug court is part of the Reconnecting McDowell initiative. The private-public partnership is aimed at reviving one of West Virginia's must economically depressed counties.

Drug courts involve the juvenile justice, social service, law enforcement, and education systems. They divert non-violent young offenders from the traditional juvenile court process and into an intensive, individualized treatment programs.

The goal is reduce the likelihood they'll end up back in the justice system.

Court officials say 6,400 youths are under some form of court-ordered diversion program or supervision by probation officers every day in West Virginia.

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