District Court Judges: Debbie Kleven, Presiding Judge; Bruce E. Bohlman; Karen Braaten; Lawrence E. Jahnke; and Joel D. Medd
Judicial Referees: Harlan Dyrud and David Vigeland.
Number of Counties in District: 2
District Court Chambers: Grand Forks
The Northeast Central judicial district continues rotating the five judges on a two year civil/criminal rotation assignment. In 2001, Judges Medd and Braaten handled the criminal rotation while Judges Bohlman, Jahnke and Kleven were on the civil rotation.
Our district also implemented a new local pilot project in all contested custody cases, except those cases involving allegations of domestic violence. Shortly after the filing of a contested custody case, a scheduling conference is handled by the law clerk. At the scheduling conference, the law clerk sets the case for a settlement conference before Judge Bohlman and assigns one of the other two civil judges to the case. Judge Bohlman meets with the parties several times during the first few months after the action is filed with a goal of settling the case before trial. Although the pilot project has only been in existence since September 1, 2001, it appears to be successful. Judge Bohlman also continues to handle the Rule 8.5 domestic relations summary proceedings for our district. In 2001, 35 divorce cases were disposed of under Rule 8.5.
The number of criminal cases filed in 2001 appears to have stayed about the same as the number filed in 2000. Our district continues to use alternatives to incarceration such as electronic monitoring and community service. The Greater Grand Forks Community Service and Restitution Program oversees adult community service and reports 12,812 hours of court ordered community service were completed in 2001.
The lay guardian ad litem program has been implemented in the Northeast Central judicial district. We have used lay guardians ad litem in many deprivation proceedings throughout the year, and the referees, juvenile court staff and social service staff have all expressed satisfaction with the program.
With the assistance of the Community Violence Intervention Center (CVIC), all employees of the Grand Forks district court received at least four hours of training on the issue of understanding domestic violence. Comments received from the staff indicated they found the training worthwhile and requested similar training be provided on an annual basis.
Juvenile Court has been busy learning UCIS and the entry of cases into that system for docket currency purposes. Also with Court recording being partly a responsibility of juvenile court we have been busy this year.
Our services continue with some traditional programing and some new. Keys, drug court, restitution, community service, tracking, electronic monitoring, drug testing, and offender mediation continue to be regular parts of our programming.
Our court officers continue to be involved in many organizations and activities in our community. Some of these include: Keys to Innervisions Core Committee, the Encore Advisory Board, the ACT Team, Drug Free Schools Advisory Board, Success Academy Criteria Team, the Answer, CVIC Domestic Violence Task Force, Nelson County Network Team, State Advisory Group and Diversified Occupations Advisory Committee. These activities help to establish a cooperative spirit with the other agencies and makes juvenile court more visible and accessible to the public.
The juvenile court participated in the planning of a new in-patient treatment center for adolescents, which recently opened across the street from the courthouse. We are excited about the prospect of helping kids with alcohol and drug problems from an in-patient perspective.
|Case Filings/ Dispositions||2000|