- Massachusetts Probation Service
Media Contact for Boston Police Commissioner William Gross encouraged and commended Charlestown Drug Court graduates at recent ceremony
Coria Holland, Communications Director
Massachusetts — Boston Police Commissioner William Gross (above) told the three graduates of the Charlestown Addiction Recovery and Treatment (CHART) Drug Court Program, their families, and friends that he and the local community are proud and supportive of them. The May 22 ceremony was held at the Charlestown Municipal Courthouse where First Justice Lawrence McCormick presided and Chief Probation Officer Michelle Williams introduced Gross and the other guest speakers.
“You’ve taken the problem head on and addressed the issues,” Gross told CHART graduates Dennis Ryan, Jared Mahoney, and Donnell Knox. “Whatever negative things led you to dependency, you have used positive voices around you and your positive voice to go forward in celebration of a new start. You’re not alone. In the old days, we would lock you up and bring you to the judge and it’s a vicious cycle. No one was asking how we could help.”
Gross continued, “As we have progressed into the 21st Century, so has looking at the challenges in life-especially dependencies. Now we know what’s up and we know your backstory. What we love is you’re meeting us halfway. We’re meeting here, no one’s giving up on you and then we progress forward. That’s the celebration.”
He was among a group of city and court officials who attended the event including Trial Court Chief Justice Paula Carey, Deputy Commissioner of Pre-trial Services Pamerson Ifill, Boston City Councilor Annissa Essaibi George and State Representative Dan Ryan.
Chief Justice Carey described attending Drug Court sessions and graduations as “one of my most favorite things to do.”
“I see the amazing work that you as participants do….You should know that we care about you. It may not feel like that at times but we do care about you. Wherever you go and whatever you do, you are a part of us,” she said.
Stephen DeLuca, a former Charlestown Probation Officer II and now a PO II at West Roxbury Municipal Court, presented the graduates with a Trial Court Coin. The ceremony also included a presentation of the Community Partners Support recognition to North Suffolk Mental Health.
CHART was first established in August 2012 and is conducted by a probation officer and presided by a judge.
Left to right: Boston Police Commissioner William Gross, State Representative Dan Ryan, Charlestown Director Sarah Coughlin, CHART graduate Jared Mahoney, Charlestown Municipal Chief Probation Officer Michelle Williams, CHART graduate Dennis Ryan, First Justice Lawrence E. McCormick, CHART Community Outreach Coordinator Shannon White, and CHART graduate Donnell Knox.