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The Latest: SD chief justice seeks new mental health court

January 9, 2019

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — The Latest on Chief Justice David Gilbertson’s State of the Judiciary message (all times local):

2:45 p.m.

The South Dakota Supreme Court’s chief justice says officials should seriously consider creating a mental health court in the Sioux Falls region.

Chief Justice David Gilbertson said Wednesday in his State of the Judiciary message that the need for such a court is “great” in Minnehaha County.

He says that from February through June 2018, 13.5 percent of prisoners screened at Minnehaha County jail intake had a mental illness.

He says a mental health court in Pennington County met a goal to become fully operational by Jan. 1.

Gilbertson says the program is led by a specially trained judge and includes a team of mental health personnel to provide treatment plans and services.

Gilbertson also says he’s supporting the addition of a judge in the Second Judicial Circuit, which includes Lincoln and Minnehaha counties, because the court system is feeling the stress of drug prosecutions.

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9:30 a.m.

The chief justice of the South Dakota Supreme Court is set to deliver an address to the Legislature.

Chief Justice David Gilbertson’s State of the Judiciary message is on Wednesday. It will be his 17th address.

The speech will focus on issues that affected the judiciary last year and the state judicial system’s goals for the coming year.

Gilbertson was appointed to the high court in 1995 and has served as chief justice since 2001.

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