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The Juvenile Justice Center is a multi faceted facility which houses a
variety of agencies that interact with the St. Joseph Probate Court, Probate
Clerk, Juvenile Probation,
CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates),
Office, Juvenile Justice Residential Program, Day Reporting,
Electronic Monitoring Program, Community Transition Program "Rebuilding
the Walls", and Central Academy.
- ST. JOSEPH PROBATE COURT
handles all juvenile cases in the County concerning delinquency, abuse,
neglect, dependency, adoptions, and the establishment of paternity. The Court also
has jurisdiction over wills, estates, and guardianships. With
the establishment of paternity, both parents will be ordered to attend an
educational class about parenting and support.
- ST. JOSEPH PROBATE CLERK
serves as Clerk of the Court for filing cases, and maintains the records of
the Court. The Clerk also collects support payments.
- JUVENILE PROBATION
the Assessment/Diversion Team receives referrals from police agencies, parents, and
schools. After an intake screening, called a Preliminary Inquiry, the
officer recommends and appropriate course of action.
The Case Planning Team prepares a social history report, called a
Pre-Dispositional, on adjudicated offenders and makes recommendations to the
Court. Juveniles placed on Probation are then supervised by the Case Management or Placement Case Management Teams.
- JUVENILE DETENTION
provides both pre and post adjudication detention for persons under age 18
subject to the jurisdiction of the Court. Juveniles detained undergo a
routine medical and mental health assessment and the appropriate treatment.
The facility operates on a value based level system. The daily routine
includes education, physical exercise and value based groups. Detainees
are also offered religious services and can request to speak with the facility
chaplain or a religious leader from another faith based organization.
Visits are restricted to parents, guardians and grandparents only. Special
visits can be requested by attorneys, clergy and counselors. The number of
visits and telephone calls are based on the value based level system.
Hours: 24 hours per day operations
Application procedure: must be referred by a police department or the
Fees: user fees are assessed on parents as part of the juvenile's
commitment to detention.
- A VARIETY OF SUPPORT SERVICES ARE OFFERED BY THE COURT
CASA (COURT APPOINTED SPECIAL ADVOCATE)
- COMMUNITY SERVICE
voluntary work performed by juveniles for a non-profit agency or governmental
- YOUTH JUSTICE PROJECT
is a two to six month diversion program sponsored by the Probation Deparment and the University of Notre Dame. Juveniles could be given a variety of projects to
complete depending upon the circumstances of their case, including, but not limited to: community service at various agencies, peer groups, and a reading program with volunteer community mentors.
- SUBSTANCE ABUSE TESTING PROGRAM
will also take walk-in urine drug screens. Parents must sign a contract
and the information will be released only to parents. (Fee: $25 -
- COURT ORDERED SUBSTANCE ABUSE TREATMENT PROGRAM (COSAT)
is an assessment, and if appropriate, a 12 week substance abuse treatment program that includes twice weekly
group therapy for both the child and family. (Total cost: $120)
this program trains volunteers who are assigned to abuse and neglect cases
currently before the Court. The volunteer meets with all parties, and
conducts an independent investigation to provide information to the Court on
what is in the best interests of the child.
JUVENILE JUSTICE CENTER RESIDENTIAL TREATMENT PROGRAM
operated by Madison Center in a contractual arrangement with the Court;
juveniles and their families are involved in intense treatment programming for
mental health, substance abuse and truancy issues.
is a family based program providing services to juveniles and families as a diversion from placement of the juvenile in the Indiana Department of Correction, or other out of home, restrictive setting. The Day Reporting Program will provide services to juveniles who need increased supervision while on probation. As a diversion program it is a privilege for the juvenile and family to be accepted into the program. Thus, both the juvenile and the family will be initially assessed as to whether there is sufficient amenability and motivation to complete the program successfully.
ELECTRONIC MONITORING PROGRAM
a home-based monitoring program used by the Court to closely supervise the
high risk juveniles under the conditions of home arrest. (Fees: $25
initial, $10 per week) In addition, probation has recently added a
Global Positioning System (GPS) option. This option can be made
available as an alternative to detention when approved by the Court.
COMMUNITY TRANSITION PROGRAM
provides a more structured and supportive release of a juvenile from an Indiana Department of Correction facility into the community. It does this by assisting parents in increasing their abilities to establish a healthy family structure, provide for the appropriate supervision and emotional support for their juvenile. Transition services begin before the juvenile is released from the correctional facility. Parents and their juvenile engage in family therapy in order to establish goals and expectations for the juvenile after discharge. After the juvenile is released into the community, the family continues to participate in services that focus on improving relationships, strengthening skills, and stabilizing the home environment.
is a court school created by Judge Peter J. Nemeth. All children who attend the academy must be on probation and "court ordered" to attend. The school is operated by the St. Joseph Probate Court for students who have been expelled, suspended, truant or at high risk of not completing their education. It is accredited by the Indiana Department of Education.
The school currently has two different programs:
- A Graduate Equivalent Degree (GED) program that is set up to help students earn a GED where the possibility of gaining a high school diploma is in question. Students have an individualized learning program crafted for them and they work at their own pace. Required testing for the actual GED test is given monthly. Those who pass the pre-test are sent on to take the GED test.
- The credit recovery program is set up to help students, who still have the possibility of earning a high school diploma, earn the needed high school credits for graduation. Students gain their credits by utilizing the Plato learning system under the direction of an accredited teacher.
The Juvenile Justice Center is always in need of volunteers to mentor a
child, assist in tutoring detainees in detention, or to provide the appropriate
religious services to detainees while in detention. In addition, a limited
number of practicum experiences for students is also provided in the Mental
Health, Day Reporting and Probation Departments. Please contact Mr. George
Kuta, Coordinator of Human Resources, if you are interested in volunteering or
wanting to be considered for practicum experience. Mr. Kuta can be reached
at (574) 235-5335.