Missouri courts: We need more efforts to keep people out of jail

Missouri needs “to continue looking at, and working toward, the diversionary courts” like drug courts and DWI courts in order “to have fewer people incarcerated in the state,” state Sen. Jack Goodman, R-Mount Vernon, said Wednesday.

He’s the new chairman of the Senate’s Judiciary Committee, and he chaired the special Rebooting Government committee on the courts and public safety operations.

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To achieve that, state Supreme Court Chief Justice William Ray Price Jr. told the special Senate committee: “The single most effective thing I would suggest to you for improvement of the criminal justice system is to spend more money breaking the cycle of addiction to drugs and alcohol — and less money incarcerating those people who then, when they come out, continue to be addicted and offend immediately again because we haven’t addressed their problem.”

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