One woman enrolled in the Drug Rehabilitation Court spent the New Year’s holiday and more in custody before being allowed to continue in the programme.
Magistrate Nova Hall said the woman had slips in the past, but the last one was a major breach of the court order that formalised her participation.
When court was in session on Thursday, 20 December, the woman asked to be released early so that she could go home because her child was sick.
But when the probation officer checked, it turned out she had not reached home until 3am on Friday.
The court ordered a warrant for her arrest and it was executed on Friday, 28 December. She was brought to court on Monday, New Year’s Eve day.
Asked what happened, the woman said her child really was sick, but after getting out of court she had phoned her husband. He told her she didn’t have to come home because he was staying home from work, “so I did some running around town.”
She was remanded until 3 January and then again to 10 January so that the team of treatment providers could discuss her situation further and decide where to go with her.
The team learned that what she had done was not unusual and there was a certain premises she went behind in order to use drugs.
Given her previous progress and all the circumstances, the team decided she should have one more chance. But bail conditions were varied to include a curfew and the requirement that she stay away from the premises that caused her a problem.
The woman’s husband was in court and he agreed with the new conditions.