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Justice Reinvestment Advisory Council Approves Grant Funding Recommendations

on October 23, 2016 by Linda Brady, POPAI President

The Justice Reinvestment Advisory Council (JRAC) met on October 20, 2016. The $2 million Community Corrections grant applications were discussed.

Summary of CC Grant Requests

38 Counties/Regional Agencies applied for funding.

All Indiana Evidence Based Decision Making (EBDM) sites applied and received priority recommendation as outlined in the grant coversheet.

  • 57 Eligible Entities Applied for Funding
    • 27 Community Corrections Agencies
    • 18 Probation Departments
    • 2 Prosecutor’s Diversion Programs
    • 10 Court Recidivism Reduction Programs
  • 12 New Entities Applied
    • 6 Probation Departments
    • 1 Prosecutor’s Diversion Program
    • 5 Court Recidivism Reduction Programs

Total Amount Requested:                            $5,685,456.66

Total Amount Recommended for Award:   $551,800.00

At the JRAC meeting, recommendations for funding for were made and voted on by the Council. The Department of Correction (DOC) Commissioner Bruce Lemmon will make the final grant funding decisions.

Priority for funding was given to those EBDM pilot sites, but due to recent events, the recommendations for those sites were tabled until the next JRAC meeting scheduled for Friday November 18, 2016. This will allow for more information to be gathered and clear expectations to be put into place before funding is awarded.

Recommendations for one time/short term funding, aside from the EBDM sites, were voted on and will be sent to Commissioner Lemmon for his approval. The one-time/short term project funding means this funding award will not be incorporated into or made a part of the agency’s base funding and is only awarded for FY 17.

Once the recommendations have been approved by Commissioner Lemmon, the DOC will send out the award notices and contract amendments to each agency. The DOC will also inform applicant agencies if no funding was awarded.



Revolutionary move away from paper in progress

Full Article

Indiana Court Times on 09/21/20016 by Lindsey Borschel , Elizabeth Fullen

Indiana’s e-filing project is at full steam just two years after the Supreme Court announced it would pursue a uniform, statewide system. By the end of 2018, all Indiana courts will have voluntary e-filing available, and attorneys will be required to electronically file most pleadings.

Twenty-first century pioneers

Change is difficult; progress is even harder. But that didn’t stop court and clerk officials in Hamilton County from volunteering to pilot e-filing. They were an early adopter of the state’s Odyssey case management system, so they understood the challenges and ultimate upshots of adopting new technology.

Soon after the e-filing pilot began in August 2015, Clerk Tammy Baitz and her Chief Deputy Debbie LePere noticed a laundry list of benefits, including:

  • Less paper and fewer mailings
  • Reduced postage costs
  • Fewer demands to pull and circulate paper files
  • Less danger of misplacing paperwork

“It’s a work in progress,” Clerk Baitz said about the evolving workflows in her office. But such a massive change in procedures means more work in the beginning: staff needs to be trained; attorneys need to be trained; filers have a different series of questions about procedure than in the past.

Judge William Hughes in Hamilton Superior Court 3 says the biggest difficulty is “getting filers to read the (e-filing user) guide and instructions to be sure they are in compliance.” Despite this challenge, Judge Hughes is optimistic. “Expect some pushback from attorneys until they actually use the system,” he advises, “After two weeks they will be asking why you waited so long to implement.”

Indiana Evidence Based Decision Making Initiative Update

on October 23, 2016 by Linda Brady, POPAI President

Dear POPAI Members:

I attended the State Evidence Based Decision Making (EBDM) Policy Team meeting on October 19, 2016.  It was our last official EBDM meeting with National Institute of Corrections (NIC) consultant Mimi Carter for Phase V.

Indiana has been approved for NIC’s Phase VI EBDM project, along with Wisconsin and Virginia, for only the Pretrial Release change target area.

Indiana’s Phase VI plan includes receiving Technical Assistance from NIC for the six EBDM counties (Jefferson, Porter, Hamilton, Hendricks, Bartholomew, Tipton), Grant County (a Phase II EBDM site), and four Indiana counties that are not EBDM counties but are Pretrial Release Pilot Project counties (Allen, Monroe, St. Joseph, Starke).

Congress’ failure to pass a budget and the current Continuing Resolution (CR) which ends in December has caused NIC’s EBDM Phase VI deployment to be in a holding pattern.

Next Steps: Indiana EBDM Policy Team to finalize document “Expectations of Indiana EBDM Pretrial Pilot Sites” and all EBDM Pretrial Pilot Counties to sign off on these expectations.   

Next meeting:  Friday November 18, 2016 (9:00 AM – 4:00 PM). Location TBD.   As always, this meeting is open to the public.   

Linda Brady, POPAI President

Funding helps Orange Co. expand its probation staff

Full Article

Times-Mail on October 5, 2016

PAOLI — The Orange County Probation Department is one of 34 probation departments that received a grant from the Indiana Department of Correction.

The grant is for $62,500 and was awarded in July. Dee Pedigo, chief probation officer, said the grant was awarded as part of a collaboration with Hoosier Hills PACT. Pedigo said grants were available for community corrections programs, probation departments, prosecutors’ diversion programs and court recidivism reduction programs. A total of 129 grant applications were submitted.

“The grant is a blessing for the department,” Pedigo said in a press release. The applications were reviewed by the Indiana Department of Correction and the Justice Reinvestment Advisory Council.

Pedigo said the funds will be used to hire a new probation officer (a position filled by Jeff Holland) and training. The grant could not be used to supplement or pay for existing positions within the probation department. The majority of the department’s budget is funded by probation user fees.

Pedigo said about 300 adults and juveniles are in the Orange County probation program. The increasing caseload trend worries those who manage probation programs, even some who supported sentencing reforms that are aimed at diverting people and money away from prisons and into community-based treatment and corrections programs.

According to Pedigo, since taking effect a year ago, sentencing reform is ratcheting demand for probation services faster than it sends people into local jails or assigns them to spots in community corrections programs. She said a study by the Indiana Judicial Center found that two-thirds of the lowest-level felony offenders are being put on probation, compared to 60 percent before the law went into effect.

The focus of the grant was to provide funding for serving moderate- and high-risk felony offenders in alternative sentencing placement and to provide
evidence-based services and supervision in a collaborative manner. The Orange County Probation Department has been referring clients to Hoosier Hills PACT, which offers evidence-based programs such as Thinking for a Change, Moving on, Decision Points, Prime for Life and Prime Solutions.

Hoosier Hills PACT also offers Day Reporting for offenders who are referred by the Orange Circuit Court and probation department. The Community Transition Program is a joint effort between the probation department and Hoosier Hills PACT. The program is for the offenders who are eligible for early release and are transitioning back into the community. Both agencies provide supervision for the offenders. The probation department also refers clients to Southern Hills Mental Health Center, Centerstone, Orange County FACT and Substance Abuse, Gateway Ministries, Churches Embracing Offenders and other providers. Probationers are monitored with the Odyssey Case Management System, which enables probation officers to track their clients and effectively manage their cases. “We have several goals in the probation department,” Pedigo said. “Community safety is always top priority. Probationers and pre-trial release clients abiding by court orders, and the well-being of our clients is always on our mind.”

Holland’s work focusing on offenders with felonies.

Link to full article. funding-helps-orange-co-expand-its-probation-staff

Recovering Addicts Using Crossfit to Exercise Their Demons

Full Article

Philly Voice on October 12, 2016 by NATALIE HOPE MCDONALD

When he got arrested for a DUI almost 10 years ago, Scott Klaverkamp was living in Boulder, Colorado, and self-medicating what he would soon learn was a debilitating form of depression.

His was an exhaustive cycle of stale-beer barrooms, late nights and harried hangovers that came to a crashing end with flashing red lights by the side of the road. It was not his finest hour.

Call it rock bottom, the proverbial wake-up call, but this low point would actually accomplish two things in Klaverkamp’s life: He would finally be diagnosed with PTSD after serving as a navy corpsman for four years active duty and he would be introduced to Phoenix Multisport, a free fitness program for addicts like him.

Fentanyl Exposure: 5 Safety Tips for Cops

Full Article on September 19, 2016 by Keith Graves

The United States is in a fentanyl crisis. I don’t use the word crisis lightly. Between 2013 and 2014, fentanyl submissions to the DEA lab from Ohio increased by a whopping 1,043 percent. Along with those submissions came a 526 percent increase in fentanyl related overdose deaths. This all happened while fentanyl prescriptions dropped.

There are several different types of fentanyl, with pharmaceutical fentanyl being hundreds of times more potent than heroin. Right now, carfentanil is the fentanyl du jour that is receiving a lot of press coverage, but that can easily be replaced by another type of fentanyl.

What is the driving force behind the fentanyl craze?
Referring back to an opiate comparison chart, fentanyl can be compared to taking 500 to 1,000 codeine pills – or fifteen times more potent than heroin. That sums up why it is so popular.

A recent DEA report outlines another reason why the fentanyl craze is exploding. According to the DEA:

“Traffickers usually purchase powdered fentanyls and pill presses from China to create counterfeit pills to supply illicit U.S. drug markets. Under U.S. law, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) must be notified of the importation of a pill press. However, foreign pill press vendors often mislabel the equipment or send it disassembled to avoid law enforcement detection.”

Fentanyl is now being used as a cutting agent in heroin and has even been found in large shipments of cocaine coming from Mexico. As more addicts find the power of fentanyl, they will switch to using it.

The 2006 fentanyl crisis was fueled by a single clandestine laboratory in Toluca, Mexico, and once the laboratory was seized, the seizures of fentanyl and overdose deaths in the United States suddenly tapered off. The current fentanyl crisis is fueled by China-sourced fentanyl and fentanyl precursor chemicals that are being sold to various individuals and organizations responsible for fentanyl processing and distribution operations. This includes individuals linked to Mexican cartels and other criminal organizations that are not affiliated with Mexican cartels.

This problem isn’t going away. At some point, the cartels will realize that fentanyl is easier to import and manufacture than keeping fields full of opium poppies. With its high potency, expect things to get worse, not better.

How to protect yourself from accidental exposure to fentanyl
When veterinarians handle and administer carfentanil, they usually wear safety gear that is close to a full hazmat suit. They do that because an amount of carfentanil as small as a snow flake can kill a human.

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Indiana Criminal Justice Association Awards

Full Article

The Michigan City News-Dispatch on October 8, 2016 by Richard Chambers


Corissa Strader

MICHIGAN CITY — In addition to the already-announced award to Detective Marty Corley as Officer of the Year, the Indiana Criminal Justice Association gave two surprise awards to people from La Porte County on Wednesday.

The association gave these and others awards to criminal justice professionals from across Indiana at its 83rd annual conference at Blue Chip Casino.

Greta Friedman, judge of La Porte County Superior Court 4 and part of the Problem Solving Court team, was awarded Judge of the Year.

Corissa Strader, coordinator of the La Porte County Problem Solving Court, was awarded Probation Officer of the Year.