Being charged with a crime for the first time can be devastating. Luckily, Texas recently passed a law that might allow residents to get their drug charges dismissed.
What is a pretrial diversion program?
A pretrial diversion (PTD) program is a way first-time drug offenders can avoid prosecution. PTD programs offer first-time offenders a chance to dismiss their case after a period of one to two years, if they can fulfill PTD program obligations under the supervision of a probation officer. PTD program requirements can involve community service, counseling services, drug treatment and payment of fees, although the requirements will depend upon each person’s individual case.
Are you eligible?
Generally, first-time drug offenders must follow the following guidelines to be accepted into a PTD program:
- No history of criminal activity
- Admit responsibility for charges
- Employed or attending school
- Check-ins with probation officer
- No use of drugs
Once a person meets all of the specified conditions of their PTD program, a court will dismiss the drug charges. If a person fails to meet any of the PTD program obligations or receives another charge during his or her time in the program, the person is no longer eligible for the program and the case would return to court.
The hope of a pretrial diversion program is to rehabilitate first-time drug offenders and keep them out of the criminal justice system in the future. If you or someone you know is facing a drug-related charge, contact a local criminal defense attorney to discuss your options and see if the pretrial diversion program is right for you.