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June 01, 2014 04:32 PM

Drug, DUI Courts Experiencing Growth Spurt

Pierre, SD

South Dakota's drug and DUI courts are expanding and new programs are popping up.

State Supreme Court Chief Justice David Gilbertson hopes to see a these courts in every city that can support them.

The first drug court in the nation launched 25 years ago in Florida. South Dakota's first such court opened in 2007, and the program grew from 65 participants in January 2013 to 105 in January 2014.

Advocates say the programs change lives and communities.

Soon-to-be drug court graduate Logan Petik says the program required intense treatment. He credits it for helping him address an addiction to prescription painkillers and get his life on track.

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