Facts about Las Vegas Justice Court Veterans Treatment Court

            The Las Vegas Veterans Treatment Court (VTC) is a court-supervised program coupled with intensive treatment and supervision for misdemeanor criminal offenders.  The VTC targets veterans who enter into the criminal justice system and are identified as having high treatment needs for either substance abuse or mental health issues, to include Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and are at risk to re-offend without treatment and intervention.  The program requires an expected 12 months of successful participation and involves veterans working jointly with the Court, Community Supervision Office, treatment providers, the Veterans Health Administration, Veterans Benefits Administration, veteran employment representatives, veterans service organizations, service officers, mentors, and other key team members.


The VTC is a specialty court within the Las Vegas Justice Court.  The court normally convenes in Courtroom 7D on the 7th floor of the Regional Justice Center, 200 Lewis Ave., Las Vegas NV 89101.


Judge Melissa Saragosa is the presiding justice of the VTC.  Her personal experience as a Colonel in the United States Air Force Reserves for over 23 years has given her a unique perspective to identify the needs of veterans who find themselves in the justice system.


What is the purpose of the Veterans Treatment Court?

The VTC is designed to reduce re-arrests, promote self-sufficiency through employment and education and to help veterans remain in the community as productive and responsible members of society by diversion from prison or jail.  Veterans will not be sent to jail if they comply with the conditions of the program and graduate.


Who is eliUnited

Any individual who has served in any branch of the Unites States Armed Forces and is currently charged with a misdemeanor criminal offense.  The decision to participate in the VTC is voluntary for the veteran who must want to participate in the program.  The judge, court staff, community supervision officers, treatment counselors and other team members will guide and assist but the final responsibility is up to the veteran who is motivated to make changes in his/her life.


How do I enroll?

Contact your attorney or advise the court at your initial appearance that you would like to be considered for the program.  Veterans may also contact the Court Coordinator at (702) 671-3317 for more information


What is the VTC Mentor Program?

            One unique component of the VTC is the mentor program, composed of volunteer veterans and active duty service personnel who freely give of their time to mentor, peer to peer, the participating members of the treatment court program.  These volunteer men and women are veterans who have served in Vietnam, Korea, Operation Desert Shield, Operation Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom.  Experience has shown that veterans are likely to respond more favorably with another veteran than to others who did not have similar experiences.  The mentors’ active, supportive relationship, maintained throughout treatment, increases the likelihood that a veteran will remain in treatment and improve his or her chances for sobriety and law-abiding behavior


How can I become a mentor?

            Dr. Richard B. Small is the VTC Mentor and Resource Coordinator (Dr. Small is also the chairman of the Nevada Veterans Foundation).  Click here for an application to be a mentor.  For additional information, contact Dr. Small at (702) 513-0215-C or Email him at

The link is:!AutnKQMcFBkTgZRuNXPK34EmcW21Jg


Mission Statement

The mission of the Las Vegas Justice Court Veterans Treatment Court is to enhance public safety and coordinate services for the veteran by providing a judicially supervised regimen of substance abuse and mental health treatment in addition to addressing the holistic needs of the veteran with the goal of returning productive law-abiding citizens to the community, thereby reducing costs associated with recidivism.


Learn more at




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