22 Sep What Is the Felony Diversion Program in Arizona?
Arizona is home to not just beautiful landscapes, but also to a large number of programs that help those who have been charged with crimes and are looking for a second chance. The Felony Diversion Program looks to set people on an educational and counseling path, as opposed to sending them to jail.
Overview of Arizona’s Felony Diversion Program
Formally known as the Drug Diversion Program or the Felony Pretrial Intervention Program, Arizona’s Felony Diversion Program is one of the many programs available that tries to keep its participants out of jail and keep felony convictions off of their records.
The participants in this program are put into counseling and given the support and education they need to help avoid future offenses. The ultimate goal is that once the felony diversion program is completed, the case will be dismissed. This allows the defendant to start over with a relatively clean slate.
Felony diversion is different from an expungement application, which only hides past convictions. Expungements work to clean a record, allowing those who have served their sentence and paid their restitutions to move on.
How to Qualify for Arizona’s Felony Diversion Program
All participants in the felony diversion program are determined by the Deputy County Attorney (DCA). Due to the nature of this program, there is a vast array of criteria you must meet in order to qualify. Each case is chosen carefully and subjected to a large set of parameters.
The participant can not have been convicted of a serious offense, such as:
- Dangerous offenses
- Dangerous offenses against a child
- Sexual exploitation of children
- Child trafficking
- And several other convictions
There are also a few other factors—like the amount of restitution owed—that can determine if the case, rather than the person, qualifies for this program.
What Happens Once You’re in the Felony Diversion Program
Once a person is accepted into the program, they will be assessed and put into a track. These tracks dictate the classes and amount of counseling the participant is required to undergo in order to fulfill the program requirements.
The felony diversion program is individualized, so while some programs may look similar, they should not all be the same. The program often includes counseling (either group or individual), as well as skill building for staying sober, and frequent drug testing.
If all the requirements are met and the participant finishes the program, then their case will be filed to be dismissed with prejudice. If they are unable to satisfy program requirements, their charges will be refiled, a court date will be set, and they will lose the opportunity to participate in the program in the future.
Criminal Defense Attorney in the Phoenix Area
If you have been charged with a felony in Arizona and think you may qualify for this program, having a good lawyer at your side will help. Every case is different, so you need to work with someone who has the right experience and is trusted by many. Todd Coolidge and associates will always work hard to help you. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.