State's newest veterans court in Anoka County fills important niche

  • Article by: David Chanen , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 2, 2013 - 8:44 PM

The state’s newest such intensive program gives a second chance to ex-military members.

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edinawaterJun. 2, 1310:16 PM

I understand that some veterans have had to deal with extreme pressures, had traumatic experiences, and seen terrible things. The same can be said for most people that end up in the criminal justice system. Many convicts grew up surrounded by violence. That doesn't excuse their behavior. This country gives vets many, many, many benefits. A pass to commit crime should not be one of them.

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blaze55555Jun. 3, 13 7:35 AM

I daresay that onerous, year-long counseling/rehab/probationary requirements are more strict than the week in jail the individual in the story would have gotten when he pled down to what no doubt would have been a misdemeanor disturbing the peace. Furthermore, entrance into the program seems to be conditioned upon a guilty plea to the underlying crime... so basically, veterans waive their rights to be put into this program, subject themselves to stricter standards than if they weren't in the program, and then plead guilty anyhow. In no world is that a "free pass," and we should be all for any program that works and keeps down recidivism. 10% of those behind bars are veterans, a group that comprises less than 1% of the population-- clearly that is an injustice which needs correction.

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jd55604Jun. 3, 13 6:43 PM

How about an elderly court or a college court or maybe even a mothers court? Or...maybe we can address the real problem by not creating more and more laws that result in LE locking up millions of people every year for petty non-felonies that clog up our criminal justice system.

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