Many people who find themselves facing drug charges never imagined that they’d be someone struggling with a substance abuse problem. Yet, a series of events led them to develop a dependency.
The County of Los Angeles created their Drug Court with these kinds of people in mind. It may allow people whose drug offenses were prompted by addiction to get help for their addiction and avoid jail time.
What should I know of the County of Los Angeles’ Drug Court?
The county’s drug court is an alternative sentencing program that allows nonviolent offenders facing certain drug charges to remain involved in their communities. These individuals can get the substance abuse treatment and vocational or academic training necessary to move forward and live a productive life.
Who’s eligible for participation in Los Angeles County’s Drug Court?
County probation officials determine whether a defendant is eligible to participate in drug court by carrying out a multi-step step process, including:
- Performing a phone interview with a candidate to assess their degree of interest in getting help
- Conducting a criminal background check on a candidate
- Reaching out to a defendant’s references.
Probation officers will refer a defendant’s case to drug court provided that a defendant performs successfully on the assessment described above.
What’s a defendant’s drug court experience like?
One of the first steps in the drug court process is for defendants to enter a plea in their case. The presiding judge will then sentence them to anywhere between six and nine months of participation in the drug court program.
Defendants can expect to attend both individual and group therapy or participate in educational or vocational training and job placement programs once selected for drug court. Any defendant that completes these requirements, which includes passing random drug tests and attending all court hearings, can have their drug charges dropped.
How do you determine your eligibility for drug court?
There’s no guarantee that Torrance probation officials will allow you to participate in drug court, yet it’s worth your try to see if you can. It may make the difference between you being able to move past this momentary indiscretion to move on with your life and from it affecting your ability to secure housing, a job, and other areas of your life in the future. An attorney can help you determine whether drug court is an option for you in your California case.