“Too often, I see the tears of parents in the courtroom as they realize their teen’s addiction to drugs. As a part of sentencing for criminal offenses, I have ordered thousands of individuals into intensive substance abuse treatment, probation supervision, AA, drug testing and educational programs which treat the individual, protect the community and reduce recidivism.”

-Judge Diane D’Agostini

Dear Judge D’Agostini,
Oct. 31, 2016

I am writing this letter about my son,—–. He was sentenced for failure to report an accident and has two probation violations. Both for positive drug/alcohol tests.
I would like to start this letter by thanking you. Maybe it will seem condescending but I’m very serious. Admittedly, when my son got in trouble, I did feel that his punishment was excessive for a traffic violation. But I now realize that it happened for a reason-that it was truly a blessing. Because of this process, I have discovered that my son has a substance abuse problem. I knew that he tried marijuana and alcohol before which is something I do not condone in anyway…I feel he has lost control of his actions. I feel he has a disease…he binge drinks and uses drugs without thinking of consequences….I know that your job is to administrate the law but I also know that you have helped people change their life and to put them in the right direction. I ask you to consider that for—. I greatly appreciate your time and consideration.

-Mom of defendant of hit and run accident

Judge D’Agostini,
Sept. 12, 2016

Time and time again you gave me the benefit of the doubt and gave me chances that I did not deserve. You saw the best in me even though I clearly did not see it in myself. I want to thank you for that and for what you have done for me. After going to jail I understand that I have been blessed with endless opportunities in my life and if I do not change things for myself then I will be stuck in the court/jail system like so many of the people I met in OCJ are themselves. While in OCJ I learned discipline and maturity as well as how to handle myself without being catered to by people around me. I have since enrolled full-time at —University, taking 17 credits as well as working as a waiter at a nearby restaurant. I have also decided to continue counseling with—and it really does help me. I am better off as a result of what I have gone through and I owe that to yourself and –. The two of you have inspired me to rethink what I am doing before putting myself in questionable situations, as well as to look forward at my future and what could happen rather than sitting and acting in the present…. I’m sorry for everything that I have done and I truly do wish the best in life for the both of you.

Best regards,

-Defendant convicted of MIP, Drugged driving

Dear Judge D,
Aug. 15, 2016

I am writing you this letter because I feel the need to let you know where I am eight months after leaving Oakland County Jail. Currently, I am 10 months sober, which I never thought would happen. I am the mother to my four kids now because I was not a good mother while I was drinking. I am a wife to my amazing husband and we enjoy each other’s company now more than ever because I am sober…. When you sentenced me I remembered you saying to me, “You’ll thank me one day.” I was so bitter at that moment and I thought I would be angry forever but in reality you saved my life. Not from death but by living the life I was meant to live. So Judge D’Agostini, thank you for giving me that time in jail to reflect on my life and turn it around.

Sincerely,

-Defendant convicted of Operating While Intoxicated-2

Dear Judge D’Agostini
May 19, 2014

You probably don’t remember me but I really needed to let you know how I feel. For the last 2 1/2 years I have been fighting a horrible secret, my addiction to heroin.…After 39 days in jail, I truly feel like a new man and I honestly believe that God answered my prayer on April 10th. Your honor I really believe that you saved my life that day, that God was working thru you to show me the path I should be following.…I really hope you get a chance to read this, because you seriously affected my life in the best way possible, you opened my eyes….Please try to enjoy the little things in life and I hope this letter puts a smile on your face.

-Defendant convicted of drug offenses

Your Honor:
Dec. 10, 2014

I’m not sure how often this occurs with a person in your position, but I would like to take the opportunity to say “THANK YOU”.
Two years ago, after — probation violation in accordance with her DUI, you sent her to jail for the second time. At that court appearance, you called her out on her resistance to take the entire situation very seriously. You enhanced her probation during the 30 days following her release to include daily breath tests, random drug testing, 4x a week mandatory attendance at A.A. meetings and required her to obtain an A.A. sponsor.
During that time, I was not very happy with my daughter’s actions and I was also very angry at you for such a “harsh sentence”. As a parent, I was mostly concerned about her safety and welfare within the Oakland County Jail system-rather than concentrating on the real problem at hand…… Today, nearly two years after that first A.A. meeting, I am happy to report that she is still clean and sober! I am quite certain that program saved her life…. We have to thank you for enforcing the strict probation. If it had not been for the added restrictions and consequences, I know the downward spiral would have continued until she either hurt herself and/or others. Thank you, again, for caring—for our daughter and others like her.

Sincerely,

-Mom of daughter convicted of OWI

Dear Judge D’Agostini,
August 18, 2011

Thank you for saving my life. My name is ___ and in the spring of 2007 I was cited for an OWI after crashing my car into a tree. Not only do I have four years of sobriety, but I also graduated Summa Cum Laude with a 3.93 G.P.A. from ___ University in Political Science. I will be attending ___Law School this fall on a Dean’s Merit Scholarship and I hope to one day give back to the community in the legal sense as you did for me. Again, thank you Judge D’Agostini, for showing me what my life might have been had I not made the decision to change my behavior.

-Defendant convicted of drunk driving

Dear Judge D’Agostini,
March 1, 2010

I am writing to say thank you. I’m sure this is not new to you. You have done many good things, as I’ve read your biography. I used to despise you as I stood in your courtroom.
My thank you is personal, deep, and sincere as you have changed my life. Three dear children of mine thank you also.
I want to thank you for being part of my sight to see the light. I have never been happier or more content with my life and myself. I was a good mom while I hid my addiction, and now I function so much better and brighter, and am the mother I want to be.

-Defendant convicted of drunk driving

Dear Judge D’Agostini,
July 30, 2008

I am writing to express my gratitude for the consideration you gave my daughter____, who was in your court yesterday for sentencing on her 2nd OUIL conviction. Your sentence of 45 days in OCJ and 2 years probation went over and above the standard of fairness and given the seriousness of the situation, may now be the single most significant gift she has received in her young life.
I pray she uses this opportunity to get the help she needs to turn her life around.

-Mother of defendant convicted of drunk driving, second

Dear Judge D’Agostini,
August 3, 2005

First, I would just like to say thank you for guiding me down the right path, and giving me this great opportunity to turn things around at an early age. Throughout the terms of my probation I have completed every task set forth meeting every deadline. I have completely stopped using drugs, and have maintained a job throughout my probationary period.

-Defendant convicted of drug possession

Your Honor,
April 20, 2010

Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You probably don’t get too many thank you cards. Thank you. ______needed something. You gave it to her. From all of us, Thank you. You were dead on, on everything.
I hope this does the trick. If I lived in Oakland County, I’d vote for you. Thanks again.

-Parent of Defendant convicted of multiple alcohol related crimes.