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Officials announce expansion of Gwinnett drug court, addition of parent accountability court

In April, officials celebrated the launch of Gwinnett County’s Parent Accountability Court. In attendance were Special Assistant Attorney General Sherry Ellison, Special Assistant Attorney General Charles Shrake, DCSS Region 3 Manager Brenda Patrick, Magistrate Judge Laura Tate, Judge Kathryn M. Schrader, Judge Karen Beyers (Mental Health Court Judge), PAC Coordinator Kristen Howard, DCSS Deputy Director Reed Kimbrough, Gwinnett DCSS Office Manager Lynn Moore, Judge Tom Davis (Gwinnett Drug Court Judge), DHS Deputy Commissioner Renorta Heard, Rep. Chuck Efstration, Sen. Curt Thompson, Gwinnett Bar President Chuck Ross and DCSS Field Operations Specialist Kristi Stone. Many community supporters and businesses also attended the launch.

In April, officials celebrated the launch of Gwinnett County’s Parent Accountability Court. In attendance were Special Assistant Attorney General Sherry Ellison, Special Assistant Attorney General Charles Shrake, DCSS Region 3 Manager Brenda Patrick, Magistrate Judge Laura Tate, Judge Kathryn M. Schrader, Judge Karen Beyers (Mental Health Court Judge), PAC Coordinator Kristen Howard, DCSS Deputy Director Reed Kimbrough, Gwinnett DCSS Office Manager Lynn Moore, Judge Tom Davis (Gwinnett Drug Court Judge), DHS Deputy Commissioner Renorta Heard, Rep. Chuck Efstration, Sen. Curt Thompson, Gwinnett Bar President Chuck Ross and DCSS Field Operations Specialist Kristi Stone. Many community supporters and businesses also attended the launch.

Gwinnett’s court officials have expanded their drug court and added a parent accountability court as part of efforts to combat the root cause of crime.

The county now holds drug court sessions in two courtrooms, with Superior Court Judge Kathryn Schrader joining Tom Davis in presidening over cases in March.

Schrader also worked to launch a Parent Accountability Court in April, working with the Georgia Division of Child Support Services to educate and equip participants to become better providers, build better families and prevent recidivism, a press release said.

The announcement comes during National Drug Court Awareness Month, when officials mark the 25th anniversary of the creation of the program. With an intensive program designed to help people reduce drug dependency, drug courts save up to $27 for every $1 invested and reduce recidivism by 75 percent, national studies show.

A community celebration of the anniversary is planned for 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, May 18 at Rhodes Jordan Park in Lawrenceville.

The Gwinnett Superior Court also maintains a mental health court, the Gwinnett State Court runs DUI court programs.