MITCHELL: An Idaho gem

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I am writing this as a personal letter of support and not as a representative of my employer or the boards on which I serve.

Judge Mitchell changes lives for the better. Through his work in presiding over the Mental Health Court, he holds individuals accountable, while allowing them to obtain needed treatment to turn things around. The Mental Health Court often provides that second chance, particularly to those who have an addiction in addition to their mental illness.

When a team consisting of the prosecutor, public defender, probation and mental health professionals come together with Judge Mitchell to review cases, they often extend hope where there was none.

Mental health courts have been created in jurisdictions across the United States because an increasing number of defendants have serious mental health conditions that are not being addressed effectively within the criminal justice system. It is an effective strategy that costs less than incarceration and provides structure for individuals to receive treatment that often is not available in jails and prisons.

Our community is fortunate to have specialty courts and Judge Mitchell overseeing Kootenai Countyís Mental Health Court.

CLAUDIA MIEWALD

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Coeur díAlene

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