Mason County Therapeutic Courts consist of Adult Drug Court, Mental Health Court, Veteran’s Court, and Family Recovery Court. The two amazing case workers, Susan and Gabbi, are at the heart of the court team.

Susan and Gabbi bring their unique experience as graduates of a therapeutic court to their work with participants to connect with, encourage, assist, and hold them accountable so that all participants can have the best chance at success.

I am proud of who our program helped me become and am grateful to work with such amazing people, and really, this job helps keep my recovery strong; reminding me where I came from. I couldn’t be more blessed.


I feel like I’ve changed, and I don’t want to ever forget where I’ve come from. I know how it feels and I don’t ever want to be unaware or forget. I try to connect with people because I can see what needs to be done because I know what it was like when I went through it. I try to help them regain hope.


The WSADCP Training Committee would like to thank Kayla Henley, Court Coordinator, for her contribution to our Treatment Court Month celebration.


Courts and the communities they serve are having difficulties meeting the challenges that come with the behavioral health issues experienced by the people seen in our courts when behavioral health and crime intersect. These behavioral health issues also impact the families of the affected individuals as well as local communities in significant ways. Community resources are strained, inadequate, and fragmented which means that the cycle of crime associated with behavioral health challenges seems to continue largely unchecked.

Therapeutic specialty courts have done wonders with the people that have been served by them, but limited resources combined with screening criteria create boundaries to entry for many. This means that courts and communities are not able to do much for people at the early stages when the issues and impacts are still controllable or for people that are not otherwise eligible.

Federal Way Municipal Court is taking on this challenge with a multi-faceted approach using the Sequential Intercept Model (SIM) with barrier-free warm-handoffs to treatment and services through peer support personnel provided by Peer Kent. Des Moines and Renton Municipal Courts are also taking this approach. Federal Way and Des Moines are sharing a grant from the Administrative Office of the Courts while Renton is operating under a separate grant.

Peer support participation is not mandated; it is instead entirely voluntary, confidential, and free. This barrier-free access to peer services using SIM opens up the opportunity for therapeutic intervention at any stage of the proceedings. In Federal Way, people are allowed to access a peer support professional who will link the person to treatment and services if they are in court on a criminal case, an infraction, and even if they are in court supporting a family member or friend.

The way SIM works is to make interventions available in an organized way at every “intercept.” There are six intercepts in SIM: community services (Intercept 0), law enforcement (Intercept 1), initial appearance in court (Intercept 2), at disposition (Intercept 3, including therapeutic courts), jail reentry (Intercept 4), and probation (Intercept 5). More information about SIM can be found here.

Federal Way, with assistance of a grant from the Administrative Office of the Courts in partnership with Des Moines Municipal Court, conducted a Sequential intercept Mapping Workshop. This workshop identified existing resources and gaps in South King County. That work is now being used to form a regional resource referral network.

Most important, peer warm handoffs are not just available in community court (Intercept 3), they are available as the means to connect people to services and treatment at Intercepts 2, 3, and 5, the intercepts controlled by the court. Peer Kent is also allowed to work in the SCORE Jail and Federal Way Police have also agreed to use Peer Kent for Blake referrals. This means that people have access to peers and services in five of the six intercepts which means that the available reach for therapeutic intervention is expanded substantially.

Does this approach work? In the first nine months, this approach served 1,445 people. Many of the people just needed referrals, but 691 people continued to engage in ongoing contact with peers.

The WSADCP Training Committee would like to thank Judge David Larson for his contribution to our Treatment Court Month celebration.



Roxy pictured at her King County Drug Court graduation on March 8, 2023, carrying a toolbox to remind her of all the skills she has learned to help her in her recovery.

Watch as Roxy and treatment court staff share about her experience and the benefits of Drug Courts. As Roxy states, “it’s like a second chance at life.”

You are also welcome to watch the entire inspiring March 08, 2023, King County Drug Diversion Court graduation (1 hour, 10 minutes), the first in person graduation held since the coronavirus shutdown traditional court operations.


As you may have heard, Governor Jay Inslee declared May 2023, Treatment Court Month. We are excited to act as a conduit of connection and belonging, helping build our treatment court community. Each week, we will feature program highlights, success stories, unique program attributes, and inspiring statistics from various treatment court programs across Washington. We thank those who took time to supply stories, flyers, photos, videos, data sheets, and other items to share with this incredible community.

Interested in sharing a success story, photo, or video? The WSADCP Training Committee is working on a success story slideshow for the 2023 fall conference. Send inquires to Stephanie Miller at [email protected]