MORROW COUNTY- The Morrow County Court of Common Pleas recently held its Substance Abuse Court’s Winter Graduation, where seven graduates were honored by Judge Robert C. Hickson, Jr. and Judge Tom C. Elkin. The ceremony took place on Friday, January 6, 2023 at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Mount Gilead.
The Morrow County Substance Abuse Court, or Drug Court, has been in existence since 2000. Currently, the court has three different dockets: Felony, Treatment-In-Lieu, and Juvenile. All three specialized dockets are credentialed and certified through the Supreme Court of Ohio, and all are funded by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.
Judge Hickson presides over the Treatment-In-Lieu and Juvenile dockets, while Judge Elkin presides over the Felony docket. Each docket has a “treatment team” that includes a Judge, a Probation Officer, and treatment providers. A lot of work goes into not only obtaining a certified drug court, but also maintaining one. There is a great deal of time, energy, and effort that the treatment team provides in striving to achieve success in drug court. For instance, Judge Hickson and Judge Elkin spend countless hours working on their respective drug court dockets. They carefully review each participant’s progress, knowing what each individual is doing well in addition to what areas of improvements may exist.
Morrow County is very fortunate to have drug courts. It is entirely up to the Judges if there is a drug court, as there is nothing mandating the court to have specialized dockets. Many courts throughout the state do not offer specialized dockets. Here in Morrow County, Judge Hickson and Judge Elkin remain fully committed to doing everything they can to combat substance abuse and addiction through these specialized dockets.
Morrow County typically holds a graduation in the winter and another in the summer. This graduation was very well attended, as nearly 100 people were in attendance. In addition to the graduates, those in attendance included family and friends of the graduates, Judges Hickson and Elkin and Court staff, and treatment providers including Maryhaven, Knox Recovery, Riverside Recovery Services, and Southeast. As in prior graduations, this event was attended by the Chester Arbor of the Gleaner Life Insurance Society (“Gleaners”), as they kindly donated delicious food and drinks for the ceremony.
Should anyone have any questions or are in need of additional information pertaining to the Morrow County Court of Common Pleas, please feel free to contact Greg Thomas, Court Administrator and Chief Probation Officer, at (419)947-4515 ext. 2295.