Specialized Services Unit

Drug and Alcohol-Probation Partnership (DAPP)

The Drug and Alcohol-Probation Partnership is relatively new program that was initiated at the end of 2009, with the help of the Drug and Alcohol Restrictive Intermediate Punishment Grant through the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.  The focus of this program is convicted, non-violent  "A Level 3 and 4" offenses as defined by the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing.  

Eligibility for the DAPP Program is the same as that for the Electronic Monitoring Program.  Participants must be assessed as drug or alcohol dependent and must receive and Intermediate Punishment Sentence to participate in the DAPP Program.  IP sentences can include work release, electronic monitoring, intensive supervision, secure treatment facilities or any combination of these to satisfy the Restrictive Intermediate Punishment component.

The unique aspect of this program combines the efforts of a dedicated Drug and Alcohol Intensive Case Manager (ICM), a dedicated and experienced Probation Officer, and local treatment providers, into a single collaborative team that supports and monitors offenders in the community.  The DAPP Probation Officer supervises the participant through the Electronic Monitoring and Intensive Supervision phases and also into the enhanced phase, if the recommended treatment programming is not complete by the end of the Intensive phase.

Offenders placed in this program are strictly monitored by the DAPP officer and must report on a weekly basis.  The DAPP team maintains regular contact with the offender, employer, treatment providers, and family in an effort to promote a stable living and working environment for the offender.  Monitoring of behavior and community involvement, coupled with increased offender contact and frequent drug and alcohol testing, allows the DAPP Team to pro-actively address issues that may arise in the offender's life.

Pre-Trial Release

This program was developed in 1992 to help address the problem of a large number of un-sentenced prisoners awaiting trial and disposition in the County Jail.  Pre-Trial Release allows for certain low risk offenders to be placed on pre-trial supervision, rather than remain in jail because of their inability to post bail.

Offenders are made eligible for this program by the Courts and are approved admission into the program by the Probation Department.  Offenders are required to abide by the Pre-Trial Release Program rules and regulations and any additional special conditions the Courts may place on the participant.

Offenders are required to report to their Pre-Trial Release Officer on a regular basis and their officer reminds them of any upcoming court appearances.  If the offense involves drugs or alcohol, the participant is referred for an evaluation and then required to complete the recommended treatment as part of the Pre-Trial Program.  

Participants are expected to seek employment, if not already employed, and are tested on a regular basis for drug or alcohol usage.  Participants may not have any contact with any victims of their offense if specified by the Court.

Failure to abide by the conditions of the program result in a Bail Revocation Hearing and the offenders are returned to the Franklin County Jail.

Producing over 9,000 jail days saved in 2011, the Pre-Trial Release Program has made a tremendous impact on the Franklin County Jail population.

Substantial cost savings also result from the more than $63 dollars per day difference between the costs of incarceration and costs for Probation Supervision services.  

Additional cost savings result from reduced staff needed at the Jail due to the lowered population.  All considered, the Pre-Trial Release Program created an estimated savings totaling more than $590,000 in 2011.

Mental Health/Jail Diversion Program

Pre-Trial Release can be used in conjunction with the Jail Diversion Program as an alternative to pre-trial confinement.  The Jail Diversion Program links individuals with serious mental illnesses and co-occurring disorders, who enter into the criminal justice system, with community-based treatment programs, services and support systems, so that they can successfully line in the community while awaiting disposition in their charges.

Offenders are also placed in the Jail Diversion program in reaction to probation and parole violations or behavior that may lead to new violations.

In these cases, active participation and successful completion allow the offender to avoid further incarceration.  Offender eligibility is determined by a collaborative team approach comprised of Probation, Jail, Public Defender’s Office, forensic caseworkers and other involved agencies.

Community Service Program

The Franklin County Community Services Program was implemented as a direct response to an overcrowding problem that was evident at the Franklin County Jail and the need for more constructive alternatives to incarceration.

The program began in September of 1992 with the aid of a grant from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.  Offenders began to actually complete community service hours in December 1992, as the Courts began to take advantage of the new Sentencing Option.  Influenced by departmental changes and trends in sentencing, the program continues to evolve as a viable sentencing alternative for offenders in lieu of incarceration.

The Specialized Services Unit Supervisor acts as the Community Services Coordinator, maintaining the program and an active list of non-profit, not for profit and local government agencies.  The coordinator will make arrangements for court ordered community service program workers to participate in local projects at the request of qualifying agencies and will aid the participants in locating agencies at which to perform their required hours.

The coordinator acts as a liaison between the Department and agency, answering any questions and addressing any concerns of the agencies in utilizing the program participants. The coordinator then collects, records and compiles statistics relating to the program’s usage.

The participant’s supervising probation officer is tasked with reviewing and providing copies of the community service program rules and timesheets. Participants are instructed that the Court Ordered hours must be completed within one half of the time they are on supervision for the criminal case requiring the community service stipulation, barring unforeseen circumstances which may allow exceptions.  

If the participant does not complete the hours within the specified time, their cases may be listed for violation proceedings for failure to complete the requirement.

Electronic Monitoring

The electronic monitoring/house arrest program (EM/HA) under the direction of the Franklin County Probation Department began in late March 1995. It was designed to provide the Court with sentencing alternatives in lieu of incarceration or following a period of short incarceration.

The program provides a middle ground between incarceration and traditional probation and parole. It also provides the Court with the approved sentencing authority to sentence offenders to a period of Restrictive Intermediate Punishment in accordance with the new Sentencing Guidelines promulgated by the Penna. Commission on Sentencing.

The emphasis of the program is to divert some offenders who might otherwise be incarcerated in the Franklin County Prison to an electronic monitoring/house arrest status that would provide both protection to the community and allow the offender to take advantage of community-based programs of treatment. The program is based on the concept of adding more positive structure to the offender’s life which, in most cases is nonexistent.

The offender is subject to intense monitoring of their activities during their stay on these programs. The offender is able to participate in positive activities that give him or her feelings of accomplishment in the community. The offender’s freedom to move about in the community is restricted and his activities monitored on a regular basis.

Offenders on the program are assessed as to their treatment needs, and a plan to meet those needs is established. Offenders on the program are required to attend all treatment programs that are indicated as necessary for the needs of the offender. Available resources in the community are utilized to aid the offender in reintegrating himself/herself into society and to lead a life of law-abiding behavior.

Franklin County also utilizes SCRAM (Self Contained Remote Alcohol Monitoring) EM units, designed to monitor alcohol use in those offenders that have demonstrated difficulty in curtailing alcohol consumption.

Intensive Supervision

The Intensive supervision program (ISP) under the direction of the Franklin County Probation Department began in early 1990. It was designed to help reduce overcrowding at the Franklin County Prison. This would be accomplished in two manners, one by providing treatment programs to inmates with drug problems and two by assisting offenders from committing new crimes through more intensive monitoring of their behavior etc. while on the program.

The program began with the aid of a grant from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD). The program has grown over the past several years and is now used as part of the Probation Department’s Intermediate Punishment sentencing alternatives.

Sentencing approval from PCCD for ISP as a Restrictive Intermediate Punishment has allowed the Court to impose ISP as part of an alternative sentence to incarceration under the new sentencing guidelines. Offenders who have violated regular supervision rules may be placed on the ISP program for a brief period of time in lieu of further violation proceedings before the Court.

A major portion of the Intensive Supervision Program centers around the use of urinalysis testing. This testing  directs attention immediately to those offenders who use drugs and who may not admit to drug use on the self report drug use question asked as part of the PSI. It also provides baseline drug use information and allows for appropriate referrals to treatment services/programs.

Drug testing also allows the ISP Officer to more effectively monitor the offender’s treatment progress and provides timely information on an offender’s continued use of or abstinence from drugs. The urine testing component of the ISP is thus useful as a diagnostic tool and as a therapeutic and monitoring tool for re-enforcing case management and treatment goals. All ISP participants must undergo a drug and alcohol assessment and comply with any treatment recommendations while on the ISP program.

Another key component of the ISP program involves employment for the offender. All offenders must be employed or actively seeking employment while on the program. The use of curfews based on the offender’s employment status also play a major role in this part of the program.

Offenders in this program are intensely monitored by the ISP staff and must report on a regular basis. ISP staff maintain regular contact with the employer, treatment provider, family and the offender in an effort to promote a stable living and working environment for the offender. Monitoring of behavior and community involvement, coupled with increased offender contact allows ISP staff to correct minor problems before they become major problems in the offender’s life.

Day Reporting

This initiative program is primarily an alternative to incarceration. It targets offenders who would normally receive county jail sentence or a short state prison sentence. Offenders may be directly sentenced to the Day Reporting Program or placed there as an alternative disposition to a Probation / Parole violation.

The Day Reporting Center (DRC) provides high accountability through daily reporting, drug screening, educational programs, Cognitive Behavioral therapy and employment/community service coupled with appropriate levels of required substance abuse treatment and counseling.

There are currently two officers assigned to the DRC. Offenders in this program are intensely monitored by the DRC Officers and must report on a regular basis. DRC Officers maintain regular contact with the employer, treatment providers, family and the offender in an effort to promote a stable living and working environment for the offender.

Monitoring of behavior and community involvement, coupled with increased offender contact allows the DRC Officers to correct minor problems before they become major problems in the offender’s life.

Specialized Mental Health Supervision Program

In January 1996 the Franklin County Mental Health Supervision program began. This program consists of a single Officer who sole job is to closely supervise the unique segment of the probation and parole clientele that displayed Mental Health & Mental retardation (MH/MR) needs.

The first focus of this program is to protect the community and the offender. The second focus of this program is to provide a structured level of close supervision to “MH/MR”cases. Combining close supervision with an effective treatment program, working in tandem with local MH/MR treatment facilities.

Specialized Sexual Offender Supervision Program

The Franklin County Sexual Offenders Unit was developed in 1996 to address the growing concerns of sexual abuse in our country and community. The sexual offenders supervision program was designed to follow the program recommendations of the American Probation and Parole Association's motto "containment approach" in managing this offender population.

The Sexual Offenders Program supervises offenders who have committed sexual offenses in Franklin County and offenders who are currently Franklin County residents that were convicted of sexual offenses in other counties. These cases are managed by providing surveillance, monitoring, and treatment.

The probation and parole officer works in conjunction with treatment providers to assist in re-educating the offender. The officer assesses the overall status of the offender for specialized treatment and intervention needs, develops and implements intervention strategies necessary to reduce criminal behavior, and meets regularly with offenders in the office and in the community.

The officer also monitors the progress of offenders in treatment or therapy, prepares Court-ordered pre-sentence investigation reports, schedules violation hearings, and performs duties related to Megan’s Law DNA requirements http://www.pameganslaw.state.pa.us/


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