Adult Mental Health Court

​​Adult Mental Health Court Logo

The mission of the AMHC is to reduce recidivism in our community by emphasizing treatment, stability, and accountability for the individuals with a qualifying mental health diagnosis and those with an Intellectual Developmental Disability. The program is judicially supervised by Judge Jennifer Edgeworth and Judge Lance Baxter, and the purpose is to provide participants the resources and support to attain emotional well-being and a foundation for long-term success. The program does this by integrating treatment services that coincide with their criminal case.

Providing a Judicial Alternative for Justice-Involved Individuals with Mental Health Conditions

Mental health and the justice system intersect all too often. Mental health courts are a recent and rapidly expanding phenomenon. In the late 1990s only a few such courts were accepting cases. Since then, more than 150 others have been established, and dozens more are being planned. The Collin County District Attorney, the 219th District Court, and County Court at Law #3 have combined to provide a Diversion program for justice-involved individuals with a qualifying mental health condition. The goal of the Adult Mental Health Court (AMHC) is to divert offenders with mental health issues out of the traditional criminal justice process and into appropriate rehabilitative alternatives. Successful completion of the program results in a dismissal of the pending criminal case(s) and the eligibility for immediate expunction.

Program Structure

With the consent of District Attorney Greg Willis and the participation of his staff, The AMHC is a Pre-Trial Diversion Program and offers participants the opportunity to have their case dismissed and the record of that case expunged upon successful completion. The program is completed in three phases and the full duration ranges anywhere from 9 months to 2 years. During this time, the participant will be required to attend Court Docket Hearings with the Judge and AMHC team twice per month and meet with their Supervision Officer twice per month. They will also be required to attend any treatment as outlined in a treatment plan that is developed for each individual. The Judge and AMHC team will work with the participant to make sure that their mental health needs are being addressed and may be able to provide financial assistance when necessary.

Qualifiers

  • Applicant must be a Collin County Resident.
  • The client must have a pending Collin County case and be out on bond.
  • Applicant must have a clinical mental health diagnosis that contributed to the pending offense.
  • Applicant must have a willingness to participate in an intensive supervision.
  • Applicant must have a willingness to abide by a treatment plan developed by the treatment provider, including counseling, group therapy, and/or medication treatment.

Disqualifiers

  • Out of County residents.
  • Current or prior sex offenses.
  • Current DWI offenses.
  • Currently on Deferred or Adjudicated Community Supervision (probation or parole).
  • Pending charges or outstanding warrants in other jurisdictions.

Major Benefits Include

  • Individualized treatment plan designed to address each participant's specific needs.
  • Assistance with and accountability for attending and participating in treatment.
  • Assistance with job searches, education progression, and/or life skills development.
  • Community and family engagement in treatment (where appropriate).
  • Dismissal and expunction of pending case(s).

Admission Process

Admission is based on a three-step process: Preliminary Approval, Screening Appointment, and Staffing.

Preliminary Approval After receiving an application, the Program Coordinator and Assistant District Attorney review it to confirm that the applicant will qualify for the program. All applications must be approved by the District Attorney's Office prior to proceeding to a screening appointment.

Screening Appointment This appointment is a face-to-face meeting with the Program Coordinator, the applicant, and the applicant's Defense Counsel. The importance of this meeting is to confirm that the applicant is fully aware of the requirements and legal consequences of the program, and to allow the applicant the opportunity to ask any questions about the program prior to deciding if they would like to participate. At the end of this appointment, the applicant will be scheduled for a team staffing for a final decision by the Judges.

Staffing and Admission The final step of the admission process involves the applicant meeting with the AMHC Judges and Team Members to discuss any further questions the applicant may have and for the Judges and applicant to meet each other prior to admission. The Judges will make the final determination to approve an applicant for admission. If approved, the applicant will be notified that day and will attend the AMHC Docket scheduled immediately after the staffing..

Staff/Team Members

  
  
  
Nessa ReidNessa Reid(214) 491-4802
Michelle GarciaMichelle Garcia(972) 548-3841
Assistant District AttorneyAssistant District Attorney
Kim LaseterKim Laseter
Hon. Jennifer Edgeworth219th District Court
Hon. Lance BaxterCounty Court at Law 3

Forms

  
  
amhc-ExtendedBrochure.pdfAMHC - Extended Brochure
amhc-handbook.pdfAMHC - Handbook
amhc-participant-agreement.pdfAMHC - Participant Agreement