Drug Court graduate says program saved his life

Drug Court graduate says program saved his life

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - The Madison County Adult Drug Court is one of the oldest in the state. On Dec. 14, 15 new people will become graduates of the program.

Wyfred Phillips graduated from Drug Court a year ago. He says he can't believe how different his life is now.

Phillips has a young daughter, supportive family and friends and a good job. But getting here took a lot of work.

"Getting to that point, it was like, ahhhh, amazing," Phillips said.

Phillips graduated from Drug Court one year ago.

"It's been great, I'm happy I was able to go through that and have that freedom and still work on correcting my mistakes," Philips said.

The program gives nonviolent offenders with addiction-related charges to get help instead of going to jail.

"We try to redirect; we have mentors and other individuals that work with them," said Judge Claude E. Hundley III, the presiding judge. "We have a lot of volunteer programs and volunteers that help us to try to put them on a different direction."

The direction leads to a fulfilled life instead of continuous repeat drug offenses.

"You know, you just end up housing and housing, and with the current situation we have with our prisons getting overcrowded, we've come to the understanding that those are the folks we don't really need in prison," Hundley said.

The program makes a huge difference in the lives of people just needing a little help.

"We get to see those folks who have really made a change in their lives," Hundley said.

Philips is living proof of that. He wants those still going through the program to know it's worth it.

"Good luck to everybody," Phillips said. "To those who are going through the program and don't see the light at the end of the tunnel, I would just like to tell them to stay dedicated. It's more than just completing the program - it's about changing your life."

The graduation ceremony is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 14, 2015 at 1:30 p.m. at the Elbert H. Parsons Law Library in Huntsville.

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