Pretrial Intervention Diversionary Program
New Jersey has a program that allows individuals charged with certain indictable offenses to have the advantage of a diversion program and avoid prosecution, called Pre-trial Intervention (“PTI”). Successful completion of PTI will result in a complete dismissal of the defendant’s charges. A defendant will have an opportunity to make a petition to apply for PTI when they appear in Superior Court for their case. The application for PTI will be reviewed by the County Probation/Criminal Case Management and the County Prosecutor’s Office who will consider certain statutory requirements and decide whether the defendant is a good candidate for the program. As a rule of thumb, a defendant is normally “eligible” for Pre-Trial Intervention if they have no prior record, have never done a diversion program before, and are charged with a third or fourth degree crime. However, certain exceptions to PTI eligibility include third or fourth degree crimes involving drug distribution, weapons, violence, and sexually based offenses. Moreover, defendants charged with first degree and second degree crimes are not eligible for PTI. An experienced attorney can work on your behalf with the County Prosecutor’s to seek consent and a waiver so that you can obtain PTI even if you are initially denied or normally not eligible. Our defense lawyers are often able to secure admittance into PTI for our clients who are facing serious charges. Contact us today at (609) 683-8102 to speak with a lawyer from our office who will be happy to discuss your eligibility for Pretrial Intervention.
New Jersey Pretrial Intervention Law
The purpose of Pre-Trial Intervention is to provide help to defendants in certain circumstances where the individual is likely to be rehabilitated and not likely to offend again in the future. In order to assess candidates for PTI the State has proscribed eligibility requirements for admission into Pretrial Intervention which are as follows: (1) the accused is charged with an offense which is eligible for PTI (i.e. Third Degree, Fourth Degree or Downgraded Second Degree); (2) the accused is likely to successfully complete the program; (3) the accused was never granted diversion of an offense previously, including a prior conditional discharge; and (4) consent by the prosecutor to admission into Pretrial Intervention. Depending on the facts of the case, the PTI term can be anywhere from 6 months to 3 years long. The court will often condition a defendant’s admittance into PTI with certain requirements such as maintained employment, drug or alcohol testing/counseling, community service, etc. Violation of one or more of these conditions of Pretrial Intervention will result in the original charge being brought back and restored to the trial calendar.
How PTI Can Help You
We consistently obtain PTI for our clients who are charged with offenses such as Shoplifting, Cocaine Possession/Distribution, Theft by Deception, Marijuana Possession/Distribution, Aggravated Assault, Terroristic Threats, Heroin Possession/Heroin Distribution, Burglary, and Prescription Drug Offenses. When an individual charged with one of these above crimes, completes Pretrial Intervention, their criminal case will be dismissed and will result in no criminal record. That is why it is so important for a defendant to explore all their possible options and make an application for PTI. Getting into Pre-Trial Intervention is far from a guarantee in any situation, and having the involvement of an experienced attorney in the PTI process is absolutely essential because it can help secure your admittance, reduce the risk of prosecutor rejection, and minimize the overall length of your PTI. To learn further about the potential for Pre-Trial Intervention contact us at (609) 683-8102 to speak with one of our defense lawyers who absolutely free.
We serve clients throughout Mercer County, New Jersey — including Trenton, Hamilton, Princeton Borough, West Windsor, East Windsor, Lawrence Township, Robbinsville, Hightstown, Princeton Township, Ewing and Hopewell — and surrounding areas, including Hunterdon County and Burlington County.