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70 Million: Where Juvenile Detention Looks More Like Hanging Out

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There’s a place in rural St. Johns, Arizona, where teens who have encounters with officers of the law can play pool, make music, and get mentored instead of going to jail. It’s called The Loft, and it’s the brainchild of a judge who wanted to save the county hundreds of millions of dollars and divert young people towards the support many were not getting at home.

Image Caption: Paul Hancock, Hannah Wilkinson and Victor Chavez stand in front of basketball hoops outside of The Loft, St. Johns, Arizona

Image Credit: Amy Martin 


  • Michael Latham, Apache County, Arizona Judge
  • Hannah Wilkinson, Mentor at The Loft
  • Paul Hancock, Director of Juvenile Court Services for Apache County
  • Richard Gwinn, Mentor at The Loft
  • Victor Chávez, Corrections Officer for Navajo County, Arizona Adult Corrections System
  • Joseph Kelroy, Director of the Juvenile Justice Services Division at the Arizona Supreme Court


Music Credits:

  • Inaequalis – “Dragonfly”
  • Xylo Ziko – “Lamu”


70 Million: 

  • Reporter: Ruxandra Guidi

Making Contact Staff:

  • Episode Producer/Host: Monica Lopez
  • Interim Executive Director: Jessica Partnow
  • Staff Producers: Anita Johnson, Monica Lopez, Salima Hamirani

More Information:


Author: Radio Project

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