Day reporting center gives woman a new lease on life

September 13, 2009|By JENNIFER FITCH

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- For Stacy Spoonhour, Sept. 7 was at once her birthday, Labor Day and, perhaps most importantly, her independence day.

Spoonhour joined family for a celebratory picnic that cool, drizzly Monday at Norlo Park. They indulged in hot dogs, baked macaroni and cheese, and sweet potatoes while observing Spoonhour's 29th birthday.

The event also marked Spoonhour's second week out of jail.

She engaged in conversation with her cousins, and enjoyed watching her daughter and son run around the park. Her attitude during the party differed from the first couple days immediately following her release, which she likened to a period of depression.

"I felt weird being around family and friends," she said.

Now, she's waking up early every day in her cousin's home in Scotland, Pa., and starting classes at the Franklin County Day Reporting Center. The center provides the substance abuse and life-skills programs that allowed Spoonhour early release from Franklin County Jail.


Spoonhour underwent a risk assessment to map out how the rehabilitation programs will be tailored to her situation.

"There were a lot of personal questions, family history," she said.

Spoonhour said she and her boyfriend started selling cocaine after she lost her job as a home-health aide. She says she didn't abuse drugs, but regularly drank alcohol.

"I don't feel like I have a drug and alcohol problem," Spoonhour said, adding that she'll talk with her case manager to get a second opinion on that.

Court records show Spoonhour pleaded guilty to a felony charge of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance after her October 2008 arrest. She spent most of the summer incarcerated.

A job readiness class starting this week has been designed to help Spoonhour reach one of her major goals -- to secure employment.

If she gets a job, she said, "I'd feel better about the whole situation."

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