Archive for June, 2010

Defense Lawyer: Drug Treatment versus Jail

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

In criminal cases in DuPage, Kendall, and Kane Counties, over the last year I’ve worked with 7 clients facing prison for their criminal charges and two others facing their first felony conviction in which I worked to get them into drug treatment programs instead. Sometimes there were legal issues in which the State acquiesced and sometimes it was a tooth-and-nail battle in court on the criminal case getting the program from the presiding judges. Four of the clients recently contacted me and thankfully to report how well they were doing. One man approaching 50 and facing a minimum 6 years in prison on his criminal case (at a cost of $180,000 taxpayer dollars by the way, give or take) has now been clean for 18 months (the first 6 in county jail, but the rest while out and about) for the first time since his teenaged years. (This was the same gentleman I had to help through the phone company crises I wrote about in a different post. ) The look of pride and health in their eyes are remarkable. While each must recognize his or her addiction forever, this, I believe, proves rehabilitation is not a fantasy in our sentencing system. I am thankful for the opportunity to have represented these clients but commend them and their counselors for their hard work. They accomplished this, not this attorney, and it’s a winning situation for everyone involved. Sadly, one parent of a client reported her son failing badly. I wish all clients will succeed, and I hope this one does eventually too. But to those who thought to contact me on their success – thank you for letting me be a part of this, and I wish you all continued success and a happy life. This, I beleive, should provide hope to those with criminal charges fueled by addiction that recovery can happen no matter how bleak things appear right now.