Friday, June 6, 2008

McCaffrey Claims Drug Courts Reduce Crime Up to 35%

A May 31st article in the St. Louis Dispatch quotes former Drug Czar Gen. Barry McCaffrey as stating "'This is not a war on drugs, This is a problem for our families in America. In order to turn drugs around in this country, we're going to have to treat those 1.5 million people who are addicted.'"

The article goes on to say: "The study from the Urban Institute in Washington found that about 3 percent of arrested addicts are referred to a drug court, which offers supervised treatment to nonviolent offenders whose records are expunged if they complete the program."

It continues: "Housing an inmate in prison can cost up to $40,000 a year while drug court treatment costs up to $3,500 per offender a year" according to Judge Charles Simmons Jr., a drug court judge in Greenville, S.C.

It further reports: "McCaffrey said 15 years of research has yielded definitive proof that drug courts significantly reduce crime by as much as 35 percent. He said legislators and the public may get behind the system once they understand its cost savings."