Orange County DA to study prosecution-led diversion program

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GOSHEN – The Orange County District Attorney’s Office is
one of five agencies nationwide to be tapped with a federal Bureau of
Justice Assistance technical assistance and training program award.
Administered by the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys, it will look
for teamwork for diversion from drug abuse between the DA’s office
and health and human services organizations including the county Departments
of Mental Health and Social Services, the Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Council
of Orange County, St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital and Cornerstone Family
Health Care.
DA David Hoovler said the study will seek to identify a program where
each agency would serve as a portal to its treatment program.
“It’s the technical assistance of people that understand the health care system, that understand prosecution, that understand law enforcement, that can look at our area, look at all the providers that we have, look at our law enforcement and look at our court system and our DA’s office, and say, ‘Here is something that will work for you’,” he said. “It has to be something that works for all of Orange County. It can’t just be something that works for the City of Newburgh but not for the City of Port Jervis.”
Hoovler will target the anti-opioid abuse message to families with children with a video public service announcement that will roll out initially on social media and later on cable TV. He is also going to micro-target public awareness direct mailings to families in areas of the county with the greatest number of overdoses.
Hoovler and Orange County Sheriff Carl DuBois have also teamed up to finance and develop a wire room to conduct their own wiretaps instead of relying on the State Police as they have for years.
The DA will also split the cost of an arson canine with the sheriff’s office and provide a second drug dog for the Port Jervis City Police Department.
The other five agencies to receive round one technical assistance awards are Dallas, Texas; Santa Barbara, California; Deschutes County in central Oregon; and the Fourth Circuit Court District in the Mississippi Delta.
Counsel to the Orange DA, Robert Conflitti, had researched the new program administered by the Center for Court Innovation during a fact-finding mission to Phoenix, Arizona into prosecution-led diversion programs.