Specialty Court Programs

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July 13-18, 2019 - NADCP Conference - National Harbor, MD

August 27-28, 2019 - Veteran Treatment Court - Mentor Bootcamp - Rogers, AR

September 4-5, 2019 - Juvenile Drug Court - Operational Tune-Up - Little Rock, AR

September 19, 2019 - Adult Drug Court - Best Practices Tune-Up - Little Rock, AR

April 8-9, 2019 - Arkansas Specialty Court Conference - Little Rock, AR

May 27-29, 2019 - NADCP Conference - Anaheim, CA


Nationally, drug courts first began in Dade County, Florida, in 1988, in response to the massive clog in the criminal court system created by the increase in illicit drug use and the resultant overcrowding of the prison system.  The first court in Arkansas was piloted in the Pulaski County under the guidance of then-Chief Justice Jack Holt and former Judge Jack Lessenberry in 1994. 

There are now 43 drug court programs functioning throughout the state of Arkansas. 

Drug court programs are an interdisciplinary, non-adversarial judicial process for diverting an offender (or alleged offender) who has a demonstrated dependence on alcohol or an illicit drug, into a strenuous treatment program that includes frequent drug testing, required employment, treatment and counseling and regular court appearances to monitor program compliance.  Drug courts are typically staffed by a team consisting of the judge and court staff, a prosecutor, a public defender or private attorney representing the offender, a probation or parole officer and drug counselor.  Treatment services are provided through community providers.  Most treatment programs last an average of eighteen months.

For additional information about Arkansas Specialty Courts, contact Janet Hawley, State Specialty Court Coordinator, Administrative Office of the Courts, 1-800-950-8221, or janet.hawley@arcourts.gov.