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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

A Team Works Together to Help Two Domestic Violence Problem Solving Court Graduates

LAWRENCE COUNTY - JUNE 28, 2022 - A whole team of people have been part of helping two men work through their issues. Today the two graduated Tuesday morning through Lawrence County's Domestic Violence Problem Solving Court program.

After a long road of hard work and dedication to the program Duane Sharp and Robert Lee graduated this morning with a room full of community leaders congratulating them on their success.

Robert Lee and Duane Sharp graduated this morning from Lawrence County's Domestic Problem Solving Court

On a daily the basis the local media post the mug shots of those who make their way into the criminal justice system. While looking at the mug shot provided by the correctional facility many would form an opinion what kind of punishment would be fitting for the crime committed.

In fact the majority of the time, many would play the role of the prosecutor, jury and then play Judge to what punishment would be fitting of the crime committed.

Judge John Plummer III stands proudly with today's Domestic Violence Problem Solving Court Graduates Robert Lee and Duane Sharp

No need for a defense attorney we could save the taxpayers the expense of a trial, let's just go right to the sentencing phase of the trial.

However, this morning is the reason why quick judgment of an individual is wrong on many levels.

In 2014, former Lawrence County Superior Court I Judge Michael Robbins and Joe Dibert, Lawrence County Probation Officer worked to tackle second largest criminal issue in Lawrence County which is Domestic Violence.

To date the Domestic Violence Court is the only one operating in the State of Indiana with a proven track record of success.

The need to address Domestic Violence came after a 2011 Center of Disease Control study citing a large number of domestic violence arrests. During 2011- 2012, Indiana recorded 64 domestic violence deaths. Two of those coming from Lawrence County.

The two who graduated from the Domestic Violence Court this morning and many looking at their condition at the time, most would have written them off.

Most would have sent them away to prison where they would belong, and we would rid society of two less criminals to roam.

At the time the two entered into the Domestic Violence Problem Court the evaluation and scoring of the two would point to high probability they would reoffend.

However, the two with the help of the team of supporters from Judges, Prosecutors, Health Care Professionals, and their family members both are now among the world of productive citizens.

The two shared their stories of where they were at and how with the help of this team have gotten their lives back together.

In today's story Lawrence County is not going to rehearse their past as a news media would normally do, but today we will just leave them where they are at this time today, their lives today.

Both have a bright future ahead and Lawrence County Zephyr will support their bright future ahead.

" You can do anything if you put your mind to it, if you want something you just go for it," said Duane Sharp.

In asking Robert Lee what the Domestic Problem-Solving Court means to him he replied " Family, I got all my family back, and told people just to take one day at a time in putting the pieces back together again," said Robert Lee

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