Alaska Veterans Court
What is the Alaska Veterans Court?
The Alaska Veterans Court is a cooperative effort of the Alaska Court system, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Anchorage Municipal Prosecutor's office. Its goal is to prevent veterans charged with misdemeanors from falling into a life of crime. Rather than arresting and jailing veteran offenders for a few days or weeks only to return them to the same type of life, this court connects veterans to VA resources. The Alaska Veterans Court is a special court within the justice system that assists veterans, as defined by federal law, who have misdemeanor charges brought by the Municipality of Anchorage, who want assistance from the VA to address treatment, rehabilitation, and possibly housing needs and employment referrals. Misdemeanor cases brought by the state are also able to be processed in the Alaska Veterans Court. Veterans who want to participate in the rehabilitative program have to plead guilty or no contest to at least one of the charges against them. Sentencing is delayed until they complete the program.
What happens in the Alaska Veterans Court?
· Be interviewed by the VA to establish eligibility as a federal veteran · Be assessed for required treatment including - alcohol, drug, mental health and/or medical · Be assessed for housing and/or job referrals · Develop a rehabilitation plan for treatment and assistance with the VA · Attend treatment · Frequently appear before the Alaska Veterans Court judge for compliance hearings · Complete the treatment plan
What are the benefits of the Alaska Veterans Court?
· Receiving needed treatment · Receiving assistance with housing and job placement · Reducing the overall sentence on your current case
Published by The Alaska Court System
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How can I be considered for the Alaska Veterans Court?
If you are reading this pamphlet at your arraignment and you decide you want to be considered for the Alaska Veterans Court, ask your attorney, the Anchorage Municipal Prosecutor or the judge to have your case placed on the next Alaska Veterans Court calendar for an "opt-in" hearing. (Note: if you qualify for and enter the Alaska Veterans Court program you will need to change your plea to "guilty" or "no contest".) Your case will be placed on the next Alaska Veterans Court calendar. If you decide after arraignment you want to be considered for the Alaska Veterans Court, you can request a Veterans Court "opt-in" hearing. Ask your attorney or the Anchorage Municipal Prosecutor.
You, your family and friends are welcome to observe the Alaska Veterans Court. The Alaska Veterans Court hearings are open to the public and are held on alternate Tuesdays at 1:30 P.M. in the Nesbett Courthouse, 825 W. 4th Avenue, Anchorage, Alaska 99501.
What is the process to enter the Alaska Veterans Court?
Entering the Alaska Veterans Court program is a six-part process: 1. You indicate your interest in the Alaska Veterans Court 2. The VA determines your eligibility as a federal veteran. 3. The VA works with you to develop a treatment and assistance plan. 4. The prosecutor reviews the VA's plan and agrees to include it in the Criminal Rule 11 agreement. 5. You accept the Criminal Rule 11 agreement. 6. The Alaska Veterans Court judge approves the Criminal Rule 11 agreement.
For more information:
Admission to the Alaska Veterans Court is not automatic. The Alaska Veterans Court, Anchorage Municipal Prosecutor and the VA must all agree that you and your criminal case qualify.
Anchorage Municipal Prosecutor's Office 907-343-4350 Alaska Veterans Court 907-264-0886 [email protected]
For more information about this publication, please call the Alaska Court System Administrative Office at (907) 264-8240 820 West Fourth Avenue Anchorage, Alaska 99501 3 4 5
A Court that Assists Those Who Have Served in Our Armed Forces