County taking applications for new drug court monitor

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Nearly 10 people have applied for the recently announced Covington County Drug Court monitor/supervision officer position. Friday is the application deadline.

Funding for the position comes from a $50,000 grant from the Alabama Administrative Office of Courts. This grant was announced last month and the drug court will give defendants the option of having their drug-related charges set aside if they agree to undergo therapy and participate in a drug-monitoring program.

District Attorney Greg Gambril had previously described drug court as an alternative mode of punishment and sentencing for only a certain class of drug offenders. However, for the program to get up and running a monitor must be hired first, he said.

“Stacey Brooks is spearheading the project, and her first goal was to hire a monitor,” Gambril said. “So far, we’ve received somewhere between eight and 10 applications and not all of the applicants were local either.”

Gambril said people as far away as Birmingham have expressed an interest in the position and members of the drug court planning team — comprised of Gambril, Brooks, Judge Charles A. “Lex” Short and prosecutor Grant Scott — plan to meet next week to discuss the applicants.

“I think then we’ll be able to decide if we’re going to hire two part-time monitors or one part-time monitor, as well as what the extent of their duties are going to be,” he said.

Interested applicants must possess a bachelor’s degree in social services, criminal justice, psychology, sociology or in any other mental health related field and must submit their resumes to the district attorney’s office before Friday at 5 p.m.

Gambril said the program should be up and running by early spring.