Updated: Feb 8, 2018
Chelsea Carter's path to recovery from addiction started and ended with her standing before the same West Virginia judge.
But she traveled the distance between her first and last appearance in part because he got her the help she needed.
Carter returned to court Wednesday where felony charges were expunged from her record, bringing her case to a close.
A decade ago, the same judge ordered her to attend a drug court instead of sending her to prison. She underwent addiction counseling and successfully completely the court's requirements.
"I really believe that without the drug court process, I would be dead," Carter said after the hearing. "It's something that gave me my life back."
[CURATED CONTENT: Written by John Raby / Associated Press, January 26, 2018 - originally published on ABCnews.go . com]