Over 20 people attended the White County Drug Court commencement ceremony Wednesday, February 1, 2023, in the Carmi City Council room. Surrounded by families, friends, and community leaders, Joseph Abel was recognized for successfully completing the intensive probation program.
Drug Court Judge Mark Shaner spoke about the work and commitment required to complete the program. Drug court requires frequent probation reporting, court reviews, drug testing, treatment, attendance at support meetings, finding and keeping employment, and completing at least 180 hours of volunteer, or public service, work. Judge Shaner noted, “Everyone who has ever completed the drug court program will tell you it is not easy. It is never easy. But it is very worthwhile.”
Joseph Abel was admitted to drug court on March 25, 2021. Throughout his time in drug court, he consistently maintained employment. He was also recognized for having completed Moral Reconation Therapy, a critical-thinking skills program, having performed over 180 hours of public service, and successfully working to obtain driving privileges.
Also attending were the many of the White County Drug Court team members who had helped Mr. Abel on his recovery road, including former White County Assistant State’s Attorney Chris Neal, Drug Court Probation Officer/Coordinator, Chelsea Glenn, Carmi Police Chief Jason Carter, Substance Use Disorder Treatment Provider with Egyptian Health, Jerri Baxley-Brown, and Peer Recovery Specialist, Haley Smith, also with Egyptian Health.