Little Rock District Judge Melanie Martin, who handles criminal cases, is beginning a mental health court to clear misdemeanor records after successful treatment.


The city news release:

Little Rock District Court-Criminal Division announced on Thursday the creation of the Pulaski County Mental Health Court to serve high risk/high needs persons who have misdemeanor charges and who suffer from mental illnesses or disorders. The Mental Health Court, with countywide jurisdiction, will be operated through Little Rock District Criminal Court.

“This is a new and voluntary, post-adjudication, highly intensive supervision program designed in collaboration with community partners,” said Judge Melanie Martin, Little Rock District Court Criminal Judge. “We are excited about offering this alternative program to Pulaski County residents in need of these mental health services.”
This designated specialty court is available only to qualifying participants meeting program eligibility requirements. A participant must:

• Be an adult resident of Pulaski County
• Have no active warrants
• Have no prior or pending sex-related offenses
• Have no prior or pending violent felony offenses

The Mental Health Court program is a minimum of 12 months. After the successful completion of the program the charge(s) are eligible for sealing. During the program participants must:

• Attend classes and mental health services
• Be tested regularly for drug use
• Report regularly to court sessions and probation officers

The court will be held the second and fourth Thursday of each month at 2:30 p.m., at Little Rock District Criminal Court First Division, 600 W. Markham, Little Rock, AR. For more information, or for attorneys to refer potential clients, please contact the Mental Health Court Program

Coordinator Natalie Short at 501-391-4573, or via email at Nshort@littlerock.gov.