GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Five years ago, Ray Johnson was facing possession of synthetic heroin charges.
But thanks to drug court, Johnson took part in an intensive rehabilitation program and is drug-free.
"It would have got me 16 years in prison," said Johnson. "I was breathless, it was amazing and one of the best days of my life."
At the end of National Drug Court Month, 34 participants were honored in Gulfport on Thursday for completing the program for non-violent first-time offenders with substance abuse problems.
Judge Lisa Dodson says the new beginning is reason to celebrate.