Homeless Court helping defendants resolve legal trouble

Homeless Court helping defendants resolve legal trouble

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

There's a new program helping those living on the streets with legal trouble get out from under the system.

Homeless Court assists homeless defendants who wish to resolve outstanding Class C misdemeanor offenses and warrants. 

The idea was a collaborative effort of Lubbock Municipal Judge Jorge Hernandez and Family Promise of Lubbock. 

With help of the program, unpaid fines for infractions, which usually prevent homeless from securing employment and housing, would be worked off through community service hours. 

Hernandez said the philosophy of the program is rehabilitative rather than punitive.

"To participate in this program, they must take steps to get out of homelessness so that's an effort they're making to improve," Hernandez said. "Through the program, their going to set them up for training, counseling, whatever they need to try and make their life better and break this cycle of homelessness."

Participants in the court must be recommended through a shelter or service agency. 

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