SCARR ( State Courts Against Road Rage) is a program that was developed to educate and reduce recidivism among drivers charged with serious motor vehicle violations. It is a program that combines the referral resources of the courts with the motor vehicle expertise of the Massachusetts State Police to promote driver and community education on the importance of safe and responsible driving. The SCARR Program originated in Newburyport Court when Judge Leah Sprague (retired) set up a meeting between the District Attorney's office, the Probation Department and Sergeant Richard Eubanks of the Massachusetts State Police 3D (Drunk, Drugged and Dangerous) Team. The purpose of the meeting was to find a way to educate aggressive drivers. When it was determined that no one was targeting this growing problem, Sergeant Eubanks designed the SCARR program. The first class was held in January of 2000 and since then it has expanded to all Essex County Courts. A presentation was recently made about SCARR to representatives of Middlesex County area courts with representatives from Norfolk and Worcester County courts also in attendance. The overwhelming positive promise of participation from these courts led to the first SCARR class in Middlesex County being held at the Natick Courthouse on Wednesday September 27, 2005. The major components of the program are to:
- Make attendees acknowledge and confront the driving behavior that got them into the class;
- Provide compelling visual images to the participants that demonstrate the serious consequences of irresponsible and dangerous driving, and;
- Provide statistical and other information that would educate drivers on the best methods for handling and preventing dangerous driving scenarios along with the promotion of the use of seat belts.
At the conclusion of the two-hour class, participants are required to complete a signature optional survey about the program and receive a certificate of completion from the probation department. Survey responses have been overwhelmingly positive with participant's comments confirming that they will increase seat belt usage, slow down on the roadways, use better judgment and avoid anger. Many acknowledge realizing that dangerous driving behavior is just not worth it!