Shunda L. Dean
Chief Probation Officer

4309 Memorial Dr.
Decatur, GA 30032
(404) 294-2700

Welcome

Greetings and welcome to DeKalb Juvenile Court's Probation Division Page.

The probation team are committed to servicing youth placed on probation by the Court in the most effective ways and strongly believe that each child brought to the juvenile court deserves the very best in what we have to offer. We believe that when excellence is the input, excellence is the output. To this end, the goals set for the division are based on the Court's mission and are to:

  • Research and be reflective of proven methods of addressing juvenile delinquency, victim's rights and community voices
  • Create a system of balanced justice that is consequential, progressive in discipline, restorative and rewarding in nature
  • Employ and motivate an able and qualified staff of professionals who are dedicated to achieving departmental goals through service

 

Some of the things implemented in the Probation division as a result of these goals include:

  • Commitment Alternative Program – This specialized caseload was created with funding from the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council and allows youth in danger of being committed to the State an opportunity to curb delinquent behavior by providing intensive services and supervision to equip them with the tools they need to make positive choices.
  • Expanding Incentives – We ensure that our system of juvenile justice is balanced in that it includes both consequences (graduated sanctions) and rewards (incentives). As a result, we expanded our list of incentives for youth that comply with court orders, are successful at home, school and/or in the community and/or who have shown positive progress. We also leveled our graduated sanctions into high, medium and low categories to ensure that a fair consequence is given when youth do not comply with expectations.
  • Circulating Surveys – Obtaining feedback on our performance is critical to evaluating our effectiveness. The division routinely circulates surveys among stakeholders, internal and external customers, community residents and staff.
  • Victim Rights Week – During this week, the Court recognizes victims of crime and hosts a series of events to acknowledge this population

2014 has been a great year for our division thus far and we are looking forward to an even greater year in the future!

Shunda L. Dean, Chief Probation Officer

DeKalb Juvenile Court

Understanding Probation

About Us

Overview of the Probation Division

The Probation Division is the supervision arm of the court. It is led by the Chief Probation Officer. Probation Officers and Supervisors of the division are responsible for ensuring that youth placed under supervision are provided appropriate supervision and services in an effort to protect, restore, redirect and support youth in their communities.

The division is currently home to a staff of 34 individuals who serve on one of the division’s four units: Intake, Special Services, Intensive Supervision or School-based Supervision. Each unit is led by one of the division’s four supervisors.

Intake Unit

The Intake Unit is responsible for entering delinquency and dependency cases presented to the court and providing intervention services to families who wish to redirect a child. In this division, cases are entered and processed for court handling. The unit is led by Juvenile Probation Supervisor, Gerald Brown. He, and his staff of officers, provides case management, intervention and customer services. The unit is also responsible for monitoring detention populations, processing youth that have been neglected or abused and diverting cases away from the court that are better handled by families, community resources and or schools. The Intake Unit is unique in that it operates 24 hours a day and is open on weekends and holidays to service the DeKalb County Community.

Special Services Unit

The Special Services Unit is responsible for Children in Need of Services (CHINS) and cases being presented before the court. The Special Services Unit is where informal cases are taken and processed for informal handling and diversion from formal handling. This unit is led by Juvenile Probation Supervisor, Bernadette Thomas-Snyder. Ms. Thomas-Snyder’s unit consists of Truancy, Court-Based and Informal Supervision Officers. These officers supervise and service truant youth (youth who have been adjudicated truant by the court) and youth that are placed on informal supervision (a short term supervision agreement that prevents youth from being formally supervised for minor and/or first time offenses). This unit includes the division’s Court Based Officers who present delinquent cases to the Court.

Intensive Supervision Unit

The Intensive Supervision Unit is home to the accountability court caseloads, sex offender caseloads, interstate transient youth and incompetent youth. The Intensive Supervision Unit is where cases that require special handling are supervised. This unit is led by Juvenile Probation Supervisor, Shunda Dean. Ms. Dean’s unit consists of Formal Supervision Officers assigned to cases that require intensive supervision. These officers handle youth who have committed sexual offenses, youth transferring in and out of state, youth deemed incompetent by the Court, youth in danger of being committed to the State, youth assigned to all-male drug court caseload and youth assigned to the all-female mental health caseload.

School Based Supervision Unit

The School-Based Supervision Unit is comprised of probation officers who are assigned to regions within the DeKalb County School System. The School-Based Supervision Unit includes youth placed on standard formal probation. The unit is led by Juvenile Probation Supervisor, Hyacinth Douglas. Ms. Douglas’s unit consists of School-Based Supervision Officers (SBPO’s) assigned to one of five regions of the DeKalb County School System (DCSS). These officers are assigned to school clusters and supervise youth who have been placed on formal probation by the Court that attend school in their cluster and youth who are not attending school in their cluster.

Sanctions & Incentives

Probation supervision is supported by several tools that assist with gaining compliance. Much like parents use allowances, gifts, chores, loss of privileges and other rewards and consequences; our Probation Division uses sanctions (consequences) and incentives (rewards) to aid in deterring negative behaviors while reinforcing positive behaviors. Some of the sanctions and incentives we use are outlined below.

Sanctions

  1. Write Essays
  2. Complete Book Report(s)
  3. Referral to Community Service
  4. Written warning
  5. Participate in Programs
  6. Waiver Conference
  7. Alternative Placements
  8. Crisis Intervention
  9. Set Reviews (place on Judge’s calendar)
  10. Supervisory Conference
  11. Remove privileges (cell phone, games etc)
  12. Day Time Lock Up / Suspension Alternatives (suspension at the court)
  13. Evening reporting center

Incentives

  1. Early Termination
  2. Letters of Recommendation
  3. Judicial recognition/commendation
  4. Gift Cards
  5. Marta Cards

The Juvenile Probation Model vs. the Adult Probation Model

*Data based on DeKalb County’s Juvenile Court and State Court Probation Divisions

Payments

(Direct traffic to Clerk of Court payment link - TBD)

Links

Contact Us

Address: 4309 Memorial Dr. Decatur, GA 30032
Phone: 404-294-2700
Email: PIOJuvenile@DeKalbCountyGA.gov