Battle Creek — A Michigan veteran and his new wife recently married in a court designed as a treatment-based alternative to incarceration for veterans.
Peter Moore and Sherry Roney married Thursday after a session of Calhoun County Veterans Treatment Court, the Battle Creek Enquirer reported .
Moore enrolled in the treatment program after being arrested for larceny. He was also facing a substance abuse problem. He graduated from the program in December and now mentors other veterans.
“The program supported me and helped me turn my life around,” Moore said. “I talked it over with God and he said it’s the best thing for me to do. It had many areas that helped me.”
Veterans can apply to attend the program as an alternative to jail. They pay fees to participate, and violating rules can cost them a few days in jail.
“In lieu of jail, it’s 18 months of hard work,” said District Judge Frank Line, who presided over a regular session of the court. “Applications are reviewed by a committee and we ask, ‘Can we do anything for this person? Is there something there that we can help this person turn around?’”
Veterans receive help with problems such as physical and mental illnesses, housing and obtaining veteran’s benefits.
Line said about 20 people are currently enrolled in the court, and nearly 200 have graduated since it started three years ago.
Moore said he chose the court for the wedding because the judge and veterans there have become his family. Wedding guests consisted of two dozen former military members with criminal records. Line said he was honored to be asked by Moore to perform the service.
“I love the judge,” Moore said. “And this is my family now.”