Mental Health Court links offenders who would ordinarily be incarceration-bound to long-term community-based treatment. The Court relies on mental health assessments, individualized treatment plans, and ongoing judicial monitoring to address both the mental health needs of offenders and public safety concerns of communities.
The Davidson County General Sessions Mental Health Court is overseen by Judge Melissa Blackburn. Admission to Mental Health Court begins with an assessment by mental health specialists who determine an offender’s compatibility for the program. If they are accepted, the period of supervision typically lasts for eleven months. More severe cases may remain within the program for a longer period of time.
In 2019, 88% of participants in the program were successful in not re-offending and did not return to involvement with the criminal justice system.