Common Pleas Court stayed busy with specialized dockets, caseloads


TROY — The Common Pleas Court of Miami County, in 2023, saw good things happen within its “Second Chance” Drug Court and Mental Health Court, implementation of the third phase of its E-filing software program, launched “ezWarrant,” as well as was busy with caseloads.

The Common Pleas Court has jurisdiction to decide felony criminal cases, civil cases that exceed $500 and domestic relations cases involving divorce, dissolution, and legal separation. The Miami County Common Pleas Court submitted the following information specialized dockets, court technology and a breakdown on the caseloads/jury trials filed in 2023:

Specialized dockets:

The Miami County “Second Chance” Drug Court, presided over by Judge Jeannine N. Pratt, added 15 new graduates to the program in 2023. The Second Chance court celebrated these graduates at its National Drug Court event held on May 27, 2023. Present along with the graduates were their friends and family, treatment team members and providers, Second Chance alumni, community partners, and elected officials. Graduates were honored for completing the 12-18 month program and achieving a lifestyle free from drugs and alcohol. The graduates will transition to the court’s newly launched alumni group where they will promote their commitment to long term recovery by offering support and mentoring to other drug court participants who share a similar journey and by giving back to their community.

The Second Chance court was recently awarded a $15,000 grant from the Ohio opioid settlement funds to add a peer support specialist to the treatment team. This person is someone who has personal experience in substance abuse recovery and who will act as a liaison between the treatment team and drug court participants to assist and empower participants in gaining hope and demonstrating how to move forward in their own recovery.

Finally, Judge Pratt was appointed by Chief Justice Sharon Kennedy to serve on the Ohio Supreme Court Commission on specialized dockets to promote the establishment of uniform rules and standards for specialized dockets in Ohio, and develop services and trainings for judges and court personnel who serve on these specialized dockets.

Judge Wall started the Common Pleas Mental Health Court in June 2022 and has seen the court grow. It held its second annual Community Resource Fair on the Courthouse Plaza with 59 agencies participating. The Fair is open to the public and provides information on every aspect of life, regardless of age and regardless of need. The Mental Health Court received its initial certification from the Ohio Supreme Court in December 2023 and seeks its final accreditation. Judge Wall and Probation Officer Jonathan Kanet presented to the CIT (Crisis Intervention Team) training and Judge Wall received the 2023 Geraldine B. Nelson Advocacy Award from the Tri-County Board of Recovery and Mental Health for her advocacy in mental health.

The Court also saw the retirement of Magistrate Christopher Gee after serving 29 years on the bench either as a magistrate or as a judge. Magistrate Rebecca Hall is now serving the Court.

Court technology:

Phase three of the Efiling software program is now complete. The software application was introduced in February of 2021. It allows for law offices to submit case filings to the Clerk’s office electronically rather than in person.

In July of 2023, the Court launched a cloud-based search warrant processing service known as “ezWarrant” that allows law enforcements officer to fill, sign and submit a warrant by electronic means to prosecutors and judges for review/approval. EzWarrant is being funded through grant monies received by Common Pleas Court and Municipal Court.

The county is looking to purchase a new audio/recording system for its thirteen hearings rooms. Implementation is anticipated in fall of 2024.

Statistical information:

The following is a breakdown of cases filed in 2023:

• Criminal Cases: 500;

• Civil Cases: 540;

• Domestic Relations Cases: 347;

• Protection Orders: 383;

• Two Jury Trials were held in 2023. Three other cases were set to move forward as jury trials, but after the jurors arrived, pleas were entered that morning, thus negating the jury trials.

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