Behavioral Health Court
*What is the mission of the Behavioral Health Court?
*When was the Behavioral Health Court established?
*What population does the Behavioral Health Court serve?
*Who can refer cases to the Behavioral Health Court?
The mission of the Behavioral Health Court of Douglas County is to connect defendants with community support services and reduce criminal involvement of defendants who suffer from serious mental illness and co-occurring disorders thereby enhancing public health and safety.
In January 2017, the Douglas County Behavioral Health Court (BHC) was established to more effectively address the increasing number of defendants with a mental illness cycling through the local court systems and the adult detention center.
The BHC is a specialized docket designed to address the unique needs of mentally ill offenders charged in the Douglas County District Court. The BHC will serve individuals who are charged or arrested and whose mental illness contributed significantly to behaviors that lead to the offense. Some defendants’ cases will be transferred from Municipal Court to District Court to facilitate their involvement in the BHC. The BHC will identify and oversee defendants’ involvement in supportive services aimed at reducing their return to custody.
Referrals to Behavioral Health Court
Prosecutors and defense attorneys, jail staff and treatment providers, police and probation officers, Municipal and District Court Judges can refer potential participants based on eligibility criteria.