Overloaded Henrico drug court puts hold on new cases

HENRICO, Va. (AP) — A program aimed at helping drug addicts to get treatment instead of getting put behind bars has temporarily stopped taking new participants because it has more cases than it can handle.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that officials have temporarily halted referrals into the Henrico Drug Court because the program was overloaded. The program normally has about 50 participants, but there are currently more than 60.

Community Corrections Director Gary Hughes says the decision to suspend acceptances was “heartbreaking.” He says eight people are expected to graduate from the program next month, freeing up spaces.

Several communities have drug treatment courts, which divert nonviolent offenders away from incarceration and into treatment programs. Participants submit to regular drug testing and have to take part in counseling.

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