The Problem-Solving Court Boom
Few occasions in the criminal justice system warrant celebration. Early in her practice as a prosecutor, Becky Hougesen Walters believed a guilty verdict was one of them. A few assignments later and over two years in the felony review unit reviewing evidence in Cook County’s most heinous crimes persuaded her that she was wrong. No matter the outcome, lives are destroyed, families are broken, and no one is truly “made whole” on either side of the courtroom.
But a little-known exception to the dismay of the criminal justice system exists in problem-solving courts (PSCs). In her September Illinois Bar Journal article, “The Problem-Solving Court Boom,” Hougeson Walters discusses the evolution and expansion of problem-solving courts across Illinois, offers their use as a suggestion for relief for clients during the COVID-19 pandemic, and provides valuable information as to how an attorney may refer a client to problem-solving courts in many Illinois counties. Be sure to see Hougeson Walter’s chart listing PSC resources for nearly every Illinois county.