A variety of Muncie and Delaware County agencies came together Monday to hold the first ever Surrender to Freedom event at Muncie Mission. Attendees could talk to a variety of agencies who offered resources, treatment options, and for some, a chance to have their warrants vacated.
Event volunteer Rhea Graham said 12 people who attended agreed to go to treatment, including Jennifer Crosby.
“[Sunday] I had been clean for six or seven days and I went to church … they told me about this event and here I am," Crosby said.
Crosby’s husband left Monday for treatment, and soon she will get treatment as well, once a few things are taken care of.
“Today [Monday] I'm just trying to make sure my daughter gets in a good place, that she can be safe while we're gone [and] my dogs are taken care of and my house is locked up. I'm gonna go too," Crosby said.
Crosby said she is excited for treatment and is most looking forward to getting her life back.
Delaware County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Zach Craig said that the Surrender to Freedom event resolved 26 warrants.
"Rather than being arrested on that warrant, which is what would typically happen if they came in contact with police, they're being given a court date and they just have to show up at that day and time at court, and then their case will proceed at normal,” Craig explained. “If they do that, then the warrant will be vacated by the court after that."
Craig said one of the best parts about the event was that people could see people from different treatment facilities and law enforcement together.
"We're not just out to arrest people, we actually want to help people and help to try to solve some of the problems that we're facing in the community," Craig said. “Most of the time, what we see is a lot of people that are involved in the criminal justice system have substance abuse issues. If we can take out or take away that fear that they have of being arrested if they’re out on the street … it opens up the possibility that they can then start trying to tackle some of their other problems.”
Craig said he hopes to hold another Surrender to Freedom event in the future.