The State’s Attorney’s Community Division was established in 2020 to formalize the Office’s expanding prevention and intervention initiatives. In addition to the Office’s primary responsibility of prosecuting crime, we are keenly aware that to ensure public safety we must also focus on prevention and intervention. Toward that goal we are investing in JUMP!, a mentoring program for court-involved and opportunity youth; our Justice Academy after-school and summer youth program; Reel Justice fishing club for families; mobile senior citizen safety fairs; providing immediate and free mental health evaluations and services (when indicated) to every child that enters the criminal justice system whether as a victim of abuse/neglect, or as a juvenile offender; and a host of family- and community-focused events and initiatives throughout the year. Programs of the State’s Attorney’s Community Division are funded by private sponsorships and donors, partnerships with social service providers and units of local government, and local, state and federal grants. Additionally, funds seized from drug dealers are used to support anti-drug efforts.
We are proud of the work of our Community Division, and its efforts have been recognized nationally and locally. For instance, our JUMP! Youth Mentoring Program is the only program of its kind in the United States and is now an official AmeriCorps National Service Program – this provides funding for program staff and stipends to mentors, in addition to tuition assistance. Our Reel Justice Fishing Club has been recognized by the Northern Illinois Angler’s Association. The Justice Academy has received financial support from the Illinois State Board of Education and from local school districts who see the value in our efforts to engage students during the after-school and summer hours. Our partnership with Riverside Medical Center and the Kankakee County Board has opened the door to place a full-time Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) on-site to provide evaluations and counseling at no cost to youth involved in the juvenile justice system – this does not exist in any other prosecutor’s office in the country.
In 2021 the Kankakee County State’s Attorney’s Office was recognized by The Daily Journal as an “Innovator in Social Services”, rare for a prosecutor’s office but a source of pride for our Office. We are consistently looking for opportunities to engage with the community in prevention and intervention efforts, and to build strategic partnerships to address community needs. If you or your agency would like to explore opportunities to improve public safety with our Office, please contact Joshua Sampson, Chief of the Community Division, (815)-802-7863 or via email at JSampson@K3County.net.
How to contact us:
Kankakee County State’s Attorneys’ Office
450 East Court Street, 3rd Floor
Kankakee, IL 60901
Chief of Community Division: Joshua Sampson