Bridgeport’s Jessica Martinez enters treatment program

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NEW HAVEN — A federal judge has ordered former Bridgeport School Board President Jessica Martinez, who was charged with campaign finance fraud last year, to be released and sent to a treatment facility for mental health and addictions, according to court documents.

Martinez was taken into custody after a bail revocation hearing on August 25. Citing his continued drug use and failure to follow his pretrial conditions, U.S. District Judge Robert M. Spector ordered Martinez detained. She has since been held in a facility in Rhode Island.

Martinez had never been incarcerated before, according to her defense attorneys in their motion for her release.

The US Marshal Service will take Martinez to the federal courthouse in New Haven on Tuesday. Her attorneys will then transport her to the Middletown Treatment Center, Spector ordered Monday.

The Middletown-based facility has “strict standards for patient safety and monitoring,” assistant federal defender Tracy Hayes said in the motion. While there, Martinez will be in a locked unit with 24/7 staff supervision, which is similar to a locked mental health hospital unit, Hayes noted. She will benefit from 20-minute breaks to leave the locked unit and go to secure and supervised grounds.

At the facility, Martinez will not receive passes to go out except for legal or medical appointments. Visitors are not allowed, except for family education sessions and two-hour family visits every second weekend. She also won’t be allowed to have a cell phone, but will have a landline phone on the wall in her unit, Hayes said in the motion.

When released from the 45-day program, Martinez must return to court to have her bail terms reviewed, Spector said.

“At that time, the court will reconsider whether there are any conditions of release that can be set which will reasonably ensure the defendant’s future appearance in court and the safety of the community,” Spector wrote. in the order. If Martinez successfully completes the program and she and the probation office agree on next steps, Spector wrote that he could “accept a bail modification request.”

Martinez and State Senator Dennis Bradley were indicted last May on alleged campaign finance fraud. She was released on bail the day of her arrest. The lawsuit has since been put on hold until a related appeal is resolved, according to Hayes.

She initially complied with the terms of her release, but in the weeks that followed, Martinez struggled with substance use and tested positive for cocaine and marijuana. After multiple compliance hearings and an intensive outpatient treatment program, Martinez continued to test positive, prompting Spector to place her under house arrest on August 4. approved activities.

Since then, “his attendance at intensive outpatient drug treatment continued to be sporadic” and “still unable to communicate with his supervising probation officer,” Spector wrote in a remand order last month. . In an Aug. 24 report, a federal probation officer said Martinez had repeatedly tested positive for cocaine use and violated her stay-at-home order while awaiting trial.

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