Municipal Court Judge Cynthia Leung will celebrate the graduation of two participants in the Women in Need of Change (WIN) Court program at 2 p.m. on Thursday, March 6, in Courtroom 5A at the Regional Justice Center, located at 200 Lewis Ave.
Judge Leung will be joined by members of the City Council and local judiciary to celebrate the graduation of two women ages 53 and 37. The graduates’ names will not be released and any footage or photos taken cannot identify these individuals.
Thursday’s graduates have criminal histories that include arrests and citations spanning 20 years. One graduate dropped out of high school and was on her own at 16-years old. She has now fulfilled a lifelong goal by successfully receiving her GED.
The other graduate is in her fourth semester at the College of Southern Nevada, and has completed her course work with honors while working diligently toward a degree. She has been able to successfully reconnect with her children and family. Both graduates are fully employed; each has secured an apartment and is ready to move forward.
“This graduation is the celebration of two different and remarkable journeys of women who imagined the life they wanted and have worked very hard to achieve, if not surpass, their initial goals,” Judge Leung said. “The strength and determination of these women are an inspiration to women in recovery and to those following in their footsteps through WIN Court.”
WIN Court is a specialty court program in the Las Vegas Municipal Court that is available to women who have at least three prior convictions for charges related to prostitution. All participants have 180 days of jail time suspended for 18 months, which is cleared upon successful completion of the program. The women must comply with rigorous sentencing requirements throughout the program requiring the participants to complete drug treatment and counseling programs, earn a GED, if needed, and pursue education/training and secure employment. The defendants must stay out of trouble and abstain from drugs and alcohol during the program. The Court celebrated its first graduate in August 2008.
WIN Court is currently is funded by Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant and a grant from the Nevada Administrative Office of the Courts.