Diversion

diversion_photo

Program Overview:

The Pre-Trial Intervention Program, also known as Diversion, is offered predominantly to first time offenders as an alternative to prosecution. The Pre-Trial Intervention Program is strictly voluntary and is offered to defendants after an Assistant District Attorney reviews the case and determines that it meets the defendant eligibility criteria. The program has been modeled after the Louisiana District Attorney Association’s DIversion Standards and is designed to meet the needs of offenders in attempt to: Read More

Contact

Collin Sims – Director of Diversion

Diversion@22da.com

St. Tammany – 985-809-8383 – ask for a Diversion Specialist
Washington – 985-839-6711- ask for a Diversion Specialist

Conditions
FAQs
Expungement
Fee Assistance

Enrollment Process

Before someone can be considered for Diversion, the Criminal Division must first conclude that it is acceptable to “divert” criminal prosecution of the defendant charged.  

If a defendant meets the eligibility criteria for the program, and the victim has no opposition to diversion, an Assistant District Attorney may refer the case to the Diversion Division. Once the file reaches the Diversion Division, the case will be reviewed and the requirements will be determined. After a case is accepted into the program, a letter will be sent to the defendant advising him/her of an appointment date and time. At the appointment the defendant will meet with someone from the Diversion Division, and all of the conditions and guidelines will be explained. Should the defendant agree to the terms, conditions, and guidelines, the defendant will enroll in the program.

While On the Program

While the defendant is on the program, he/she will be completing the required conditions and will be monitored for compliance. The defendant must be complying with the conditions and requirements set forth, must maintain negative drug screens and not be involved in any illegal activity. Failure to remain in compliance can result in immediate termination from the program, and the defendant will be immediately subject to prosecution.

Upon Successful Completion

Once a defendant completes all of the program requirements and his/her monitoring period has elapsed, the District Attorney’s Office will “DECLINE PROSECUTION”. 

The District Attorney will refuse or dismiss the criminal charges, pending successful program completion. However, the District Attorney’s office does not have the defendant’s arrest record expunged. If a defendant wishes to have his arrest record expunged, it is his responsibility to do so after successfully completing the Diversion Program.  

Advantages of the Pre-Trial Intervention Program

The Pre-Trial Intervention Program provides the defendant an opportunity:

  • For positive self-development,
  • To gain awareness to the consequences of future criminal behavior,
  • To avoid additional expenses as related to criminal prosecution,
  • To avoid a possible criminal conviction,
  • To remain in the community with limited disruption to family life and employment,
  • To get supervision to aid in deterrence of future criminal behavior,
  • To have his/her charge(s) refused or dismissed by the District Attorney’s Office, should he successfully complete the program.

 Program Goals

The goal for the Pre-Trial Intervention Program is to give the defendant a service plan structured to help the individual avoid behavior likely to lead to future arrests.


Conditions

PLEASE NOTE: Exact requirements will not be determined until the Director of the Pre-Trial Intervention Program reviews the individual case. Typical conditions include fees, counseling, drug screen, community service. Conditions may be modified at the discretion of the Pre-Trial Intervention Program Director or the District Attorney. 

 Financial
  • Cost of the program depends on the offense.
  • Consideration will be given to defendants who cannot financially afford the program’s fees. Financial assistance DOES NOT waive any obligation to pay restitution.  The waiver of or reduction of fees will likely result in an increase in the number of community service hours to be performed by the defendant. 
Drug Testing

All defendants participating in the Pre-Trial Intervention Program will be required to submit to random drug and alcohol testing.


FAQs

How do I request my case be considered for diversion?

Must I hire an attorney in order to request my case be considered for the Diversion program?

What forms of payment do you accept?

To whom do I make my Money Order/Cashier’s Check payable?

How do I turn in my payment?

If I enroll in the Diversion Program, do I still have to go to court?

If I have completed Diversion, do I still need to appear at my next court date?

Can I get an extension on my drug screen?

If I am late on a payment, will I be penalized?

I missed my first diversion appointment, how do I get a new one?

How do I request reinstatement?

Can I get off of diversion early?

Can I participate in the Pre-Trial Intervention Program if I live out of the jurisdiction?


Expungement

Why Would a Person Need an Expungement?

The moment an individual is arrested by the police and taken into custody, that individual has a criminal history, even if the arrest does not lead to charges being filed or a conviction. The consequences of a criminal arrest or conviction can be severe and long-lasting. Employment opportunities, voting rights, access to government assistance, and financial aid for education and technical training can all be negatively impacted by the existence of a criminal records. There is a legal process for some criminal records to be expunged. To learn more as to whether you qualify and instructions on filing please visit the website of New Orleans’ Justice and Accountability Center.  Click here for their online guide.  And click here for their brochure.  If you provide your email address they will send you information about how to continue with an expungement on your own. 


Fee Assistance

If a participant does not have the funds or the ability to earn the funds necessary to enroll in Diversion, the participant can complete and submit to this office a Hardship Application for consideration. If the participant qualifies, the D.A. fees can be reduced or even waived or a payment plan can be developed. However, those participants who receive a partial or full waiver of their enrollment will likely be required to perform additional community service work in exchange for the assistance. The ability of a participant to maintain (or obtain) employment will be taken into consideration when granting any financial relief.

Please call the Diversion Office at (985) 809-8383 or email Diversion@22da.com to discuss this offer of fee assistance.

There are consequences to submitting a false Affidavit to a law enforcement agency.


Forms