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Red Hook Justice Center Faces Red Ink

Desiree Pardo strolled into the courtroom six months after she was arrested for possession of a small amount of crack cocaine with a reason to be happy.

She had struggled with drug addiction for 17 years, but this morning she had tested negative for all substances. Three large windows let sunlight illuminate the clean white walls of the small courtroom. Pardo sat in the second row of polished wooden benches and maneuvered to get a good view of the judge.

“This man is a good man,” she said. “He gave me a chance.”

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