District Court Chief Michael Moore joined members of the Frederick Police Department for the launch of their new Crisis Response Team co-responder program. This new mental health resource will be provided to the citizens of Frederick City through a partnership between FPD, Sheppard Pratt, the Mental Health Association of Frederick County, Frederick County Health Dept., and the City of Frederick Dept. of Housing and Human Services. Moore believes that this will be an important step forward stating, “The Crisis Response Team is a great way to bring much needed mental health resources to the front lines. This new team is a perfect complement to what we are trying to achieve in the courtroom, with the added benefit of being present in the very first moments of crisis.”
The State’s Attorney’s Office is working hard to address the needs of those struggling with mental health issues. In September 2020, Frederick launched a Mental Health Court program. The Frederick County District Court’s Mental Health Court Program (MHCP) strives to compassionately and effectively address the needs of individuals with mental disorders in the criminal justice system by connecting participants to comprehensive and individualized treatment supports and services in the community. The MHCP is a post-plea, pre-sentence specialty court. The court project is a widely collaborative, community-based effort committed to providing access to resources, training, and expertise to address the unique needs of this population.
Following today’s launch of the Crisis Response Team car, Mental Health Court Coordinator Jeb Kimble commented, “we plan to work with FPD and hope that they are able to divert people to the resources they need.” He added, “it is important that we get to people before they become too deeply entrenched in the criminal justice system.”
The MHCP currently has 7 participants, with anticipated growth as the program continues to gain referrals.