DISMISSALS FOR FIRST TIME OFFENDERS
Many counties are now offering alternative punishment programs to assist first-time offenders. Pre-Trial Diversion or PTD is the most common type of progressive disposition program. Typically the program is administered by the probation department. A participant in the PTD program will complete a one to two year probation term with conditions of probation that are similar to what a defendant would be assigned through a criminal court. Once someone successfully completes the PTD program, the criminal case will be dismissed and the person is entitled to an immediate expunction under 55.01(a)(2). PTS offers some great opportunities for first-time offenders. However, PTD programs are typically left to the exclusive control of the District Attorney’s Office. That means you need an experienced attorney to help you navigate the application program and advocate for you. Depending on the county, you will be required to apply for Pre-Trial Diversion. Usually this includes:
- A Sworn Statement by the Offender Admitting to the Offense
- Letters of Reference Supporting Your Character
- A Letter Requesting Admission to the Program
- A Resume
- Application Fee
Each District Attorney’s Office has a unique procedure. The guidelines and requirements may change based on the nature of the offenses charged and background of the offender. Below are some of the counties that offer Pre-Trial Diversion Programs.