Probation & Court Services
The Probation Division is dedicated to empowering and motivating juveniles and families to achieve pro-social goals by providing opportunities for change. This is made possible through comprehensive and collaborative supervision strategies focused on consistency, community protection, accountability and skills development.
The Court Investigations Unit works with new and returning juveniles during the pre-adjudication and sentencing process. Probation Officers in this unit work with juveniles and their families to gather information that will assist the court, and work closely with the judges and attorneys to ensure that areas of community protection, accountability, and skills development are addressed for each juvenile.
The Field Probation Unit supervises male juveniles on probation in Ada County. Field Probation Officers are responsible for monitoring and assisting compliance of court-ordered probation terms. Monitoring may include home, school, and office visits, as well as urinalysis testing and referrals for treatment programs and services that are available in the court and community. Probation Officers are involved in school and community activities, including teaming with local law enforcement. Due to the many forms of supervision, all probation officers in the Field Unit have flexible schedules that include working evenings.
Female Offender Unit
The Female Offender unit supervises female juvenile offenders in Ada County starting at the court investigations level through termination of their probation. Probation Officers in this unit go through gender-specific training. The program uses casework supervision, best practices, gender responsive groups to achieve the following objectives:
- To create a safe, trusting environment to promote the development of the female minor’s confidence, self-esteem and life skills
- To help the female minor identify factors that lead to criminogenic behavior
- To connect the female minor with competency based programs that address the criminogenic factors, i.e., family relationship, social, and educational programs, mental health and substance abuse services, etc.
Diversion is a voluntary program that offers juveniles an opportunity to resolve a filed police report without appearing in court. If a juvenile is referred to the Diversion Program by the Prosecuting Attorney, s/he will meet with a Diversion Probation Officer to review their pending police report, their rights, and expectations of the Diversion Program. If a juvenile agrees to participate, a social history interview will be conducted, and the Diversion Officer will develop a contract for the juvenile and parent that may include a Diversion fee, community service, reparation to victims, letters of apology, and applicable groups.
The contract encompasses aspects of accountability (holding the juvenile responsible to the victim and the community for his/her offense) and competency development. The juvenile is given more information and skills about the law, making better choices, and saying no to peer pressure. The typical contract length is 90 days; however, a juvenile may complete the program sooner if all contractual terms are met. Alternately, the contract may be extended if more time or services are needed to complete contract terms.
For more information on Probation Services, please see our Frequently Asked Questions page contact our main office at 208.287.5750, or contact:
Probation Services Manager
Court Programs encompass an array of programs and services for delinquent youth and their families including prevention programs in area schools, Victory Academy, Drug Court, electronic monitoring and other community supervision services, residential and outpatient substance abuse treatment, counseling services, and various groups facilitated by staff. For more information about our court programs, please contact us at 208.287.5600.
The Prevention Program has three components: a collaboration between juvenile court and school districts to facilitate prevention groups for at-risk students in middle and junior high school; Law Related Education presentations in the local school districts; and interns working diversion cases at the juvenile court.
Interns at Juvenile Court are trained in Small Group process and ACJCS’s Prevention curriculum at the beginning of the fall semester. They are assigned as teams to junior high or middle schools that choose to collaborate with the court in facilitating groups for “at-risk” youth. Groups are held at the school during the day, rotating through the different periods so that a student does not miss too much of a particular class. They are usually 8 weeks in duration and cover one school period per week.
Law Related Education Presentations
Law Related Education (LRE) presentations are conducted by ACJCS's Prevention Program Coordinator and support staff. The presentation includes a video tour of the detention center,
a lecture on the laws that youth typically violate, an explanation of juvenile and magistrate court processes, and a question and answer session. The LRE presentation focuses on good decision-making and the consequences of violating the law, and attempts to relate to students in a personal way without using scare tactics.
Diversion Case Management
Interns are trained to manage cases that are on the front end of the juvenile justice system in Ada County. Typically, these are youths who have been brought in on their first offense. The intern, in collaboration with the juvenile and his/her family, determines the defendant's programming and consequences. The intern makes appropriate referrals and monitors the progress of the youth during the contract time period.
Informational pamphlet: Court Information for Parents and Juveniles (pdf)