On Thursday, Aug. 15, the Southeast Judicial District Court will hold its first drug court session in Jamestown.

Officials have been meeting to plan the first rural drug court to serve people in Barnes and Stutsman counties. North Dakota Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Director Leann Bertsch authorized a full-time position to be dedicated to the program.

Tyler Falk is the drug court coordinator and parole and probation officer for the North Dakota Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

“I’m excited to be a part of the Southeast Judicial District Drug Court team,” Falk said. “I believe this program will be a huge asset to the communities in our area in bringing services to individuals that are ready to make lifelong changes in their lives. This will also, in turn, make our communities safer and break the cycles that addiction disorders have caused to many families in our community.”

The program manager is John Gourde.

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The Southeast Judicial District Drug Court is a court-supervised treatment-oriented program targeting participants whose major problems stem from substance use disorders. Drug court is a voluntary program, which includes regular court appearances before a drug court judge. Participants must also attend treatment, submit to random drug testing, and maintain regular attendance at community support meetings. Participants may receive assistance in obtaining education, housing, vocational training and job placement services. The program length, determined by the participant’s progress, will be a minimum of 14 months. Completing and graduating from the program could result in the modification of probation conditions, early termination of probation and/or dismissal of criminal charges.