JOLIET – Will County State’s Attorney James W. Glasgow announced that a veteran of the U.S. Army and Army Reserves and the first military member admitted into the Will County Veterans Court in May 2012 will graduate from the program.
Marco Vizcaino, 33, of Willowbrook, who has struggled with heroin addiction, will graduate from Veterans Court during a ceremony scheduled for 1 p.m. April 17 at the Jacob Henry Mansion’s Victorian Ballroom,15 South Richards Street, in Joliet.
In addition to Vizcaino, 18 other people will graduate from Will County Drug Court or Will County Veterans Court. There will be a total of 16 Drug Court graduates and three Veterans Court graduates during the April 17 ceremony.
Veterans Court functions as a program within the Will County Drug Court. Over the past 14 years, the Drug Court team has helped more than 300 people kick their addictions and avoid felony convictions for non-violent offenses they have committed.
Graduates from both courts are from Joliet, Orland Park, Essex, Crete, Mokena, Plainfield, Crestwood, Naperville, Frankfort, Woodridge, Bolingbrook, Morris, Peotone and Villa Park.
State’s Attorney Glasgow worked with the local judiciary, including former Chief Judge Gerald Kinney and presiding Drug Court Judge Carla Alessio Policandriotes, to establish the Veterans Court in May of 2012. The court is designed to provide treatment, counseling and assistance to local veterans who have struggled with mental health and substance abuse disorders – in many cases as a direct result of their service to our country – since returning home from military operations.
“Over the years, thousands of veterans have returned home suffering from substance abuse problems or mental health disorders,” said State’s Attorney Glasgow. “We enjoy extraordinary freedoms because of their sacrifices. We have an obligation to acknowledge their service and provide them with the treatments and counseling needed to regain their lives. “
The graduation ceremony is open to the public. Veterans organizations are encouraged to attend. For information on the upcoming ceremony, call (815) 774-7852 or (815) 723-1630.