The mission of the misdemeanor Williamson County DWI/Drug Court Program is to enhance public safety by providing supervision and treatment to offenders through a judicially supervised, therapeutic Court that ensures accountability and recovery.
DWI/Drug Court Intent and Purpose
The misdemeanor Williamson County DWI/Drug Court (DDCP) is designed to provide an alternative to the traditional method of adjudicating. It is led by Judge Laura Barker and supported by a team of professionals from the legal, law enforcement, and treatment communities. DDCP is a structured program, lasting a minimum of 12 months that integrates local criminal justice resources, case management, and substance abuse treatment designed to rehabilitate adults accused of misdemeanor alcohol or drug-related offenses. The DDCP Team consists of an assigned judge, court coordinator, prosecutor from the County Attorney's Office, a defense attorney, representatives of the community supervision and corrections department, treatment providers, local law enforcement, and program evaluator. The team works together for the common goal of helping participants receive treatment from substance dependency and remain in recovery. It is through this team effort that maximum benefits will accrue for Participants with substance-related problems.
The DDCP has two tracks available and is designed to facilitate the rehabilitation of Participants accused or convicted of misdemeanor drug or alcohol offenses that meet criteria. All participants will have offenses which, in their totality, provide the DDCP at least 12 months of jurisdiction, but could be extended depending upon the treatment needs of each participant.
The two tracks available are the High Risk/Low Need, Deferred Adjudication Track and High Risk/High Need, Post Adjudication Track. The Deferred Adjudication Track is for individuals that either failed out of the County Attorney’s Pre Trial-Intervention Program (PTIP) for continued alcohol use on a DWI 1st offense or those who meet criteria for deferred adjudication probation according to Texas’ new statute for certain Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) offenses. Although not severe, according to criteria these individuals would benefit from a judicially supervised treatment program to further ensure public safety. The Post-Adjudication Track is primarily for individuals who have a repeat DWI or drug offenses that exhibit substance related problems. Participants already under supervision that violate the terms of their supervision may be admitted to the DDCP.
Participants are carefully screened and must meet eligibility criteria. They are required to address their chemical dependency and/or mental health issues, resolve their legal obligations and obtain/maintain employment or schooling. They will also be required to make regular court appearances, meet with licensed probation officers, case management, submit to frequent and random drug testing, and advanced alcohol testing and monitoring equipment. The court will also direct its efforts toward changing offender behavior, addressing transportation and licensing issues, and focusing on the rights of any victims.
Honesty among participants is rewarded, and court responses are reduced for honest admissions of violations, while they are increased for dishonesty. Relapse is a common behavior for individuals in treatment; especially early in treatment and to the extent possible, the response to relapses will include an increased treatment response. Upon an unsuccessful discharge from DDCP, the case will be returned to court via a Motion to Revoke Supervision, or a Motion to set Aside Deferred Adjudication.