Mental Health Program Overview

What is Mental Health Court?

The Mental Health Court is a problem solving court, specialized in working with offenders who have been diagnosed with a mental illness and/ or a co-occurring disorder. In collaboration with the Central Magistrate, Adult Detention Center, County Courts of Law, Pretrial Services and Treatment Providers, the Mental Health Court staff provide early identification of offenders to offer access to mental health treatment and community resources, as an alternative to incarceration.

The offender receives medication management, intensive case management services and supervision under Community Supervision and Corrections Department. The Mental Health Court is a voluntary 12 month program. There is ongoing collaboration among the Judge and Mental Health Court team members to monitor and support participants mental stability, sobriety and successful completion of probation conditions.
Program Overview:

The Mental Health Court is held every Monday afternoon in County Court of Law No. 12. Mental Health Court referrals are accepted from Central Magistrate, Jail, Probation, County Courts of Law, Defense Attorneys, District Attorney's Office, treatment providers or community. The attorney's permission is obtained prior to offering the program to an offender. Once permission is obtained, the offender is scheduled for a screening with the Court Case Manager to explain the program and complete a screening packet. If the offender agrees to participate in the program and not active in treatment, the Court Case Manager will refer offender to a treatment provider. The Court Case Manager will staff the case with the Mental Health Court team to discuss admission into the program. If the offender is accepted to participate in the program, the originating court, attorney and offender are notified. The offender is set for hearing on the Mental Health Court docket. The offender will attend ongoing case status hearings with the Judge and the Mental Health Court team. The Mental Health Court program has a three-phase
treatment process. A participant's phase advancement is decided by the Mental Health Court team after reviewing goals completed in each phase. The participant will receive certificates of recognition with each phase advancement. A participant receives a certificate of completion when graduating from the Mental Health Court program. Graduates will have completed the phases, treatment programs and court requirements.

The Mental Health Court is a collaborative effort of the following Bexar County Offices:

  • Department of Community Resources
  • Mental Health Public Defender
  • County Court of Law No. 12
  • District Attorney's Office
  • Community Supervision and Corrections Department
  • Adult Detention Center
  • Pre-Trial Services
  • Treatment Providers