ILNews

Court defines due process rights for drug court participants

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The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with a defendant that his due process rights were denied when his participation in a drug court program was ended without giving him notice of a hearing, or allowing him to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses.

Even the state conceded that Robert L. Gosha was denied his right to due process and believed he should have a new hearing.

In Robert L. Gosha v. State of Indiana, No. 48A02-0912-CR-1210, as part of his probation violation, Gosha was referred to drug court. Sanctions would be stayed if he successfully completed the program. After being admitted, he was allegedly found with drugs and paraphernalia in his home.

The drug court held a hearing without notice and without any evidence presented, and terminated Gosha’s participation in the program. The trial court also denied Gosha’s request for an evidentiary hearing on the ending of his participation and Gosha’s motion to correct error.

Finding Hopper v. State, 546 N.E.2d 106 (Ind. Ct. App. 1989), to be instructive, the Court of Appeals ruled that the due process rights afforded a defendant in probation revocation hearings are now required for defendants participating in a drug court program. Defendants should receive written notice of the claimed violations, disclosure of the evidence, a chance to be heard and present evidence and cross-examine witnesses, and have a neutral and detached hearing body.

The drug court is to conduct an evidentiary hearing to allow Gosha written notice of the violations, and the ability to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses. The judges also noted that a defendant may waive his right to procedural due process, but Gosha didn’t knowingly waive that right.

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  1. Thank you, John Smith, for pointing out a needed correction. The article has been revised.

  2. The "National institute for Justice" is an agency for the Dept of Justice. That is not the law firm you are talking about in this article. The "institute for justice" is a public interest law firm. http://ij.org/ thanks for interesting article however

  3. I would like to try to find a lawyer as soon possible I've had my money stolen off of my bank card driver pressed charges and I try to get the information they need it and a Social Security board is just give me a hold up a run around for no reason and now it think it might be too late cuz its been over a year I believe and I can't get the right information they need because they keep giving me the runaroundwhat should I do about that

  4. It is wonderful that Indiana DOC is making some truly admirable and positive changes. People with serious mental illness, intellectual disability or developmental disability will benefit from these changes. It will be much better if people can get some help and resources that promote their health and growth than if they suffer alone. If people experience positive growth or healing of their health issues, they may be less likely to do the things that caused them to come to prison in the first place. This will be of benefit for everyone. I am also so happy that Indiana DOC added correctional personnel and mental health staffing. These are tough issues to work with. There should be adequate staffing in prisons so correctional officers and other staff are able to do the kind of work they really want to do-helping people grow and change-rather than just trying to manage chaos. Correctional officers and other staff deserve this. It would be great to see increased mental health services and services for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities in the community so that fewer people will have to receive help and support in prisons. Community services would like be less expensive, inherently less demeaning and just a whole lot better for everyone.

  5. Can I get this form on line,if not where can I obtain one. I am eligible.

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