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22nd Judicial Circuit - Jason G. Sterwerf, Director of Special Projects

Domestic Violence Court

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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE COURT - CREATING ACCOUNTABILITY THROUGH COLLABORATIONAll misdemeanor cases involving a charge of domestic battery will be returned to a dedicated courtroom and a dedicated judge who will be responsible for overseeing case possessing from initial hearing, disposition and for post dispositional compliance monitoring. Close judicial oversight of defendant behavior is maintained through frequent court appearances and regular information exchange with attorneys, prosecutors, Court Services personnel and treatment providers. As evidenced by research, judicial monitoring has been shown to impress upon defendants the realization that the court knows what a defendant is doing within a treatment program, is aware of any infractions or violations that the defendant may have committed, and understands that the court will respond strongly to noncompliance.

Differentiated case management (DCM) techniques will be utilized to process cases based upon the amount of judicial oversight required. The appeal of DCM is that it can contribute to increased productivity without sacrificing quality. Increased productivity, in turn, contributes to increased timeliness. Thus, more cases will be disposed of within established time guidelines and judicial staff will have more time to dedicate to more complex issues. In essence, the goal of DCM is to provide the same or better justice, sooner. Thus allowing the court to ensure the rights of due process, while not ensuring more process than what is due.

Domestic Violence Court Standing Order


• That all misdemeanor domestic battery cases will be disposed of within six (6) months from the date of filing.
• That every court events will be meaningful and will move the case closer to disposition.
• That all litigants will participate in trial conferences. Parties will provide the court with a trial conference memo containing; discovery issues, exhibits and jury instructions.
• That every defendant will undergo all necessary treatment evaluations prior to sentencing.
• That if a case is scheduled for jury trial that a jury trial will take place.
• That all parties will negotiate in good faith.
• That all parties appearing before the court are prepared.
• That treatment providers will provide all necessary information in a timely manner.
• That every defendant will appear for treatment evaluation(s), appointments and treatment sessions.
• That defendants will appear before the court as ordered.

Goals of the Domestic Violence Court

• Promote victim and public safety
• Timely resolution of cases of domestic violence and violations of orders of protection.
• Build and strengthen collaborative partnerships with the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office, McHenry County Public Defender’s Office, McHenry County Department of Probation and Court Services, McHenry County Family Violence Council and area law enforcement agencies.
• Provide fair and consistent judicial supervision and oversight from initial appearance through post-disposition when sentences include probation, conditional discharge or supervision.
• Ensure swift response to defendants who violate orders of protection, bond conditions, conditions of probation and/or orders of the court
• Reduce non-compliance to court orders through judicial oversight and post dispositional monitoring.
• Reduce recidivism.
• Increase compliance to treatment recommendations.
• Improve the quality of life for all McHenry County residents.

2200 North Seminary Avenue, Suite 116
Woodstock, Illinois 60098 

815-334-4478 Office • 815-334-4691 Facsimile