Dylan knows life is about choices.
When he was 17, he and his best friend chose to enlist in the United States Marine Corp for four years. He says his time in the Marines was the best and worst of his life.
Another choice changed Dylan’s life forever.
“I had left my ex-girlfriend’s house and I was speeding on my motorcycle,” Dylan shared. “While I was speeding, I passed a cop and then I noticed a police cruiser coming up behind me flashing his lights, but I didn’t stop. Instead, I ran from him.”
Dylan wrecked his motorcycle that night, and he also received a felony charge on his record. Thankfully, Dylan’s lawyer connected him to Veterans Treatment Court (VTC) and a second chance.
Established in 2015, VTC is a collaborative effort between Volunteers of America North Louisiana, Caddo District Court, Veterans Affairs Office, and La. State Probation and Parole. Presiding Judge Craig Marcotte explains, “Veterans Court is a program to help veterans that have had issues with the law. It helps them with getting a job, housing, their records clean, charges expunged and getting them back on track.”
Dylan has been in the VTC program for 14 months now, and once he graduates his felony will be expunged from his record. “It’s honestly helped me a lot. I was in a bad mental place when I got arrested, but I have been able to get help and I go to counseling now.”
“It’s a really good community, because everyone looks out for each other and you relate to each other.”
Today, Dylan just wants to move forward.
“My personal goal is to not make the same mistakes. I’m getting a second chance, so I definitely don’t want to blow it. I want to go back to school and become a firefighter.”