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News

Akron Municipal Court Probation Officer Chosen For Ohio Supreme Court Strategic Planning Committee
06/25/2019

Akron Municipal Court Probation Officer Matt Esterle was hand-selected by the Supreme Court of Ohio’s Specialized Docket Section to serve on its strategic planning committee. The committee’s goal is to spread awareness for the Veterans Treatment Court movement.

Organizers from the Center for Court Innovation, headquartered in New York City, met in Columbus, Ohio last month with stakeholders, including Esterle, to develop a strategic plan for guiding and advancing Veterans Treatment Courts. When a veteran returns from service, he or she may experience substance use disorders, trauma and/or mental illness which can lead to a criminal charge. An overall goal for all Veterans Treatment Courts is to reduce recidivism while providing resources such as behavioral health counseling and formal mentorship to offenders. 

Esterle, who has been with the Akron Municipal Court for more than twelve years, serves as Probation Officer for Akron Municipal Court’s Valor Court, led by Judge Jerry Larson. Akron Municipal Valor Court is a specialized docket dedicated to male and female defendants with military service involved in the criminal justice system.

Specialized dockets are courts that are dedicated to specific types of offenses or offenders and use a combination of different techniques for holding offenders accountable while also addressing the underlying causes of their behavior. In addition to Valor Court, the Akron Municipal Court has four specialized dockets: Mental Health Court, Recovery Court, Family Intervention Court and Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated (OVI) Court. Each specialized docket meets 2-4 times per month.

“Probation Officer Esterle is a key player in our Valor Court,” said Akron Municipal Court Judge Jerry Larson. “He is a major reason why Valor Court has so many success stories. He is dependable, dedicated to those enrolled in Valor Court and passionate about our mission.”

Akron Municipal Valor Court celebrated its fifth anniversary in 2018 and was one of the first of its kind to launch in the State of Ohio. Today, Valor Court is one of our state’s 24 specialized dockets created specifically for veterans.

Probation Officer Matt Esterle

Probation Officer Matt Esterle

Judge Jerry Larson

Judge Jerry Larson