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IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE

SEVENTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT, IN

AND FOR BROWARD COUNTY, FLORIDA

ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER NO. III-02-N-1A
IN RE:
ORDER CONCERNING CREATION
OF THE MENTAL HEALTH PROBATION
PROGRAM WITHIN THE CIRCUIT COURT
CRIMINAL DIVISION
________________________________/

WHEREAS, this Circuit has recognized that the creation of specialized treatment programs has
enhanced the expediency, effectiveness and quality of Judicial Administration;
WHEREAS, it is essential that a new strategy be implemented to focus upon individuals charged
with offenses where probation is appropriate and otherwise permitted by law, who are mentally ill or
mentally retarded, in view of the unique nature of mental illness and mental retardation, and the need for
appropriate treatment in an environment conducive to wellness and not punishment, as well as the
continuing necessity to ensure the protection of the public, and
WHEREAS, there is a recognized need to treat defendants who desire such treatment and who
are placed on supervision with the Department of Corrections, to be supervised by Probation Officers
who are particularly sensitive to their needs and conditions and who will coordinate efforts with the
appropriate treatment programs and social service agencies within the mental health system, without
compromising the safety of the public, and
WHEREAS, the Department of Corrections has designated and trained certain probation
officers to act as Mental Health Probation Officers in recognition of the special needs of mentally ill and
mentally retarded probationers, and

WHEREAS, the rapidly increasing number of cases involving mentally ill or mentally retarded
defendants has contributed to the congestion and overburdening of the court dockets in the Circuit
Court Criminal division, as well as jail overcrowding, and
WHEREAS ordering Mental Health Probation for mentally ill or mentally retarded defendants
so that they may be monitored by this recognized and identified program within the Department of
Corrections would increase the efficiency of the Criminal Court System as well as the quality of the
supervision of these cases in this Circuit, and
WHEREAS, this Circuit has recognized that the administration of such treatment or program is
most effective if the defendants participate of their own free choice and volition, and this Circuit
specifically recognizes their ability and their right to make that choice and decline entry into this program
if they so choose,
IT IS NOW THEREFORE
ORDERED that:
Effective January 2, 2002, if deemed appropriate by the presiding Judge and otherwise
permitted by law, and with the specific agreement and consent of the defendants themselves, defendants
suffering from mental illness or mental retardation, as diagnosed by a qualified mental health expert, may
be sentenced to a probationary period entitled "Mental Health Probation" to be supervised by specially
designated Probation Officers within the Department of Corrections. For the just and efficient
administration of the Mental Health Probation Program, the following procedures are to be followed
when sentencing a defendant to the program:

1.
Any Defendant intending on being sentenced to Mental Health
Probation shall first file a Notice of Intent to be Evaluated for Mental Health
Probation.
2.
Prior to being sentenced to Mental Health Probation, the Defendant
shall be interviewed by a Felony Mental Health Coordinator designated by
the Court Administrator's Office. Any information gathered from the
Defendant, relevant to criminal activity other than that for which he is
charged, pursuant to this interview, shall be disclosed only to defense counsel.
Any information pertaining to the crime for which the Defendant stands charged
shall only be used to determine his/her eligibility for Mental Health Probation
and shall not be used against the Defendant. The sole purpose of the Felony
Mental Health Coordinator interview is to evaluate the Defendant's eligibility for
Mental Health Probation and to develop a treatment plan.
3.
If determined eligible by the Mental Health Coordinator for Mental
Health Probation, the Mental Health Coordinator will develop a treatment plan
to be incorporated into the Orders of Probation at sentencing. The plan shall be
made available to the Defendant or his attorney, the Office of the State Attorney
and the Department of Corrections prior to sentencing.
4.
At sentencing, a defendant placed on Mental Health Probation shall
be informed by the Court that his/her sentence shall include, as a special
condition of probation, participation in a specific and comprehensive treatment
plan.
5.
As a prerequisite to placement on Mental Health Probation, a
defendant shall execute an Authorization for Release of Medical and
Psychological Records as deemed necessary for the treatment of the
defendant's mental illness and/or supervision by the Department of
Corrections. Said release shall be to the Mental Health Treatment
Provider with redisclosure to the Department of Corrections, counsel for
the Defendant and the Office of the State Attorney. The medical and
psychological records provided to these agencies shall be kept separate
from all other records of the defendant with the intent that they remain
confidential pursuant to Florida Statutes 394.4615 and 945.10. All
materials gathered pursuant to this release shall be confidential as set forth
in the release authorization.

6.
If a defendant placed on Mental Health Probation is indigent, the
Court may convert any court costs to a civil lien, and the court shall order
that failure to pay court costs shall not be the basis for an affidavit/warrant
for violation of probation.
DONE AND ORDERED in Chambers at Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida
on this the 9th day of January, 2002, nunc pro tunc January 2, 2002.

/s/DALE ROSS
DALE ROSS, CHIEF JUDGE

IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE

SEVENTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT, IN

AND FOR BROWARD COUNTY, FLORIDA

ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER NO. III-02-N-1A
IN RE:
ORDER CONCERNING CREATION
OF THE MENTAL HEALTH PROBATION
PROGRAM WITHIN THE CIRCUIT COURT
CRIMINAL DIVISION
________________________________/

WHEREAS, this Circuit has recognized that the creation of specialized treatment programs has
enhanced the expediency, effectiveness and quality of Judicial Administration;
WHEREAS, it is essential that a new strategy be implemented to focus upon individuals charged
with offenses where probation is appropriate and otherwise permitted by law, who are mentally ill or
mentally retarded, in view of the unique nature of mental illness and mental retardation, and the need for
appropriate treatment in an environment conducive to wellness and not punishment, as well as the
continuing necessity to ensure the protection of the public, and
WHEREAS, there is a recognized need to treat defendants who desire such treatment and who
are placed on supervision with the Department of Corrections, to be supervised by Probation Officers
who are particularly sensitive to their needs and conditions and who will coordinate efforts with the
appropriate treatment programs and social service agencies within the mental health system, without
compromising the safety of the public, and
WHEREAS, the Department of Corrections has designated and trained certain probation
officers to act as Mental Health Probation Officers in recognition of the special needs of mentally ill and
mentally retarded probationers, and

WHEREAS, the rapidly increasing number of cases involving mentally ill or mentally retarded
defendants has contributed to the congestion and overburdening of the court dockets in the Circuit
Court Criminal division, as well as jail overcrowding, and
WHEREAS ordering Mental Health Probation for mentally ill or mentally retarded defendants
so that they may be monitored by this recognized and identified program within the Department of
Corrections would increase the efficiency of the Criminal Court System as well as the quality of the
supervision of these cases in this Circuit, and
WHEREAS, this Circuit has recognized that the administration of such treatment or program is
most effective if the defendants participate of their own free choice and volition, and this Circuit
specifically recognizes their ability and their right to make that choice and decline entry into this program
if they so choose,
IT IS NOW THEREFORE
ORDERED that:
Effective January 2, 2002, if deemed appropriate by the presiding Judge and otherwise
permitted by law, and with the specific agreement and consent of the defendants themselves, defendants
suffering from mental illness or mental retardation, as diagnosed by a qualified mental health expert, may
be sentenced to a probationary period entitled "Mental Health Probation" to be supervised by specially
designated Probation Officers within the Department of Corrections. For the just and efficient
administration of the Mental Health Probation Program, the following procedures are to be followed
when sentencing a defendant to the program:

1.
Any Defendant intending on being sentenced to Mental Health
Probation shall first file a Notice of Intent to be Evaluated for Mental Health
Probation.
2.
Prior to being sentenced to Mental Health Probation, the Defendant
shall be interviewed by a Felony Mental Health Coordinator designated by
the Court Administrator's Office. Any information gathered from the
Defendant, relevant to criminal activity other than that for which he is
charged, pursuant to this interview, shall be disclosed only to defense counsel.
Any information pertaining to the crime for which the Defendant stands charged
shall only be used to determine his/her eligibility for Mental Health Probation
and shall not be used against the Defendant. The sole purpose of the Felony
Mental Health Coordinator interview is to evaluate the Defendant's eligibility for
Mental Health Probation and to develop a treatment plan.
3.
If determined eligible by the Mental Health Coordinator for Mental
Health Probation, the Mental Health Coordinator will develop a treatment plan
to be incorporated into the Orders of Probation at sentencing. The plan shall be
made available to the Defendant or his attorney, the Office of the State Attorney
and the Department of Corrections prior to sentencing.
4.
At sentencing, a defendant placed on Mental Health Probation shall
be informed by the Court that his/her sentence shall include, as a special
condition of probation, participation in a specific and comprehensive treatment
plan.
5.
As a prerequisite to placement on Mental Health Probation, a
defendant shall execute an Authorization for Release of Medical and
Psychological Records as deemed necessary for the treatment of the
defendant's mental illness and/or supervision by the Department of
Corrections. Said release shall be to the Mental Health Treatment
Provider with redisclosure to the Department of Corrections, counsel for
the Defendant and the Office of the State Attorney. The medical and
psychological records provided to these agencies shall be kept separate
from all other records of the defendant with the intent that they remain
confidential pursuant to Florida Statutes 394.4615 and 945.10. All
materials gathered pursuant to this release shall be confidential as set forth
in the release authorization.

6.
If a defendant placed on Mental Health Probation is indigent, the
Court may convert any court costs to a civil lien, and the court shall order
that failure to pay court costs shall not be the basis for an affidavit/warrant
for violation of probation.
DONE AND ORDERED in Chambers at Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida
on this the 9th day of January, 2002, nunc pro tunc January 2, 2002.

/s/DALE ROSS
DALE ROSS, CHIEF JUDGE

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