Magistrate Louis P. Wargo III recently presided over a special session of the Ottawa County Municipal Court when he recognized the sole graduate of its Benchmark Alcohol/Drug and Mental Health Intervention Court Program. The court session, followed by a reception for the graduate and his supporters, honored the programs’s graduate for his successful completion of the two-year court program.
“Since its inception nearly four years ago, the Benchmark Program has served the families and citizens of Ottawa County by addressing the County’s mental health and substance abuse issues,” said Judge Frederick C. Hany II.
Wargo, who regularly presides over the weekly court sessions, commended the graduate, stressing the fact that he had made great strides turning his life around for not only his betterment but also his family, friends and our community as well.
“The graduate’s family has been very supportive throughout this entire process,” he said. “This particular graduate has seen that through his perseverance, hardwork and commitment, he has not only bettered himself, but others as well, including his service as an active mentor for those participants following him in the program.”
The court’s Benchmark Intervention Program has been supervising a rehabilitation program for chemically dependent individuals as well as individuals with serious mental health problems charged with misdemeanor offenses since July 2008. Funding for the establishment and operation of the Intervention Court was initially being supplemented by a Department of Justice Grant, but has, since that date, received the full support of the Ottawa County Commissioners.