How Can I Get My Charges Dropped?

If you have been charged with a crime, there are limited options for having your charges dropped. Generally, there are three main ways that charges may be dropped or eliminated in Mooresville. These include deferred prosecution, conditional discharge, and participation in a drug treatment program. There are also some special programs in place to assist with veterans, minors under the age of 18, and those with mental illness.

In order to get the charges dropped, you must meet the criteria necessary for the particular program. Keep in mind that even if you qualify for a particular program, there is no guarantee that the charges will be dropped. Each case is different, and the ultimate decision lies with the prosecutor. It is best to discuss the matter with an experienced Mooresville criminal defense attorney to review possible outcomes and plan accordingly.

Deferred Prosecution and Conditional Discharge

Deferred prosecution is an agreement with the prosecutor to wait to prosecute your case. A deferred prosecution is something that needs to be negotiated between your attorney and the prosecutor. This option allows you a period of time to demonstrate good behavior. Once you complete the probationary requirements, the prosecutor will drop the charges. It is important to note that you will typically have a probationary period that can last up to two years. During probation you are under supervision and continued good behavior is required.

Only those who are charged with a Class H or Class I misdemeanor or felony are eligible for deferred prosecution. In addition to a written agreement with the prosecutor, you must not have been previously convicted of a felony or misdemeanor crime that involves intentional dishonesty. You must also not have been placed on probation. Any victims of the crime for which you were accused must be notified and allowed to be heard in a court hearing. Even if you meet all of the criteria for a deferred prosecution, you may not be provided with this resolution. The court will need to decide that you are unlikely to commit any other offense except a Class 3 misdemeanor in the future.

If you are granted deferred prosecution, you must not have any further criminal charges during your probationary period. You may be given supervised or unsupervised probation and will need to regularly report to a probation officer. You may also be subject to random drug testing and counseling for drug or alcohol abuse.

A conditional discharge has the same requirements as a deferred prosecution. The main difference between the two is that with a conditional discharge you pled guilty or were found guilty of a Class H or Class I felony or misdemeanor. In this instance, the prosecutor and defense attorney have come to an agreement that the fact that you were found guilty will not be entered as a judgment of the court.

Drug Treatment Program

The drug treatment program is overseen by the Mecklenburg County lower district court and is provided as an option for some types of cases. The program is specifically tailored to the individual in each case. In general, the program requires you to take part in substance abuse counseling and participate in random drug screening. You will be assigned a case coordinator who is in charge of reviewing your needs and helping you get access to the resources that are necessary. For example, you may also need medical care, housing, employment assistance or counseling.

In order to participate in the program, you must live in a county that offers the drug court program. If the program is not offered in your county, you will not be allowed to participate. In general, to qualify for the program you must be addicted to a substance and be willing to take part in the program voluntarily. You must also be eligible for community service under the sentencing guidelines for your particular crime. Those who are classified as habitual felons, drug dealers, or violent offenders are not allowed to take part in this program.

Special Diversion Programs

There are several special diversion programs in place for those who qualify. These are designed for veterans, juveniles, and those who suffer from mental illness. Operation Recovery is for veterans who have experienced trauma while serving in the military and are managing a substance abuse problem. The program offers an alternative to a jail sentence.

The Jail Diversion Program works in much the same way for those with mental illness. When mental illness caused the criminal behavior, the person may be eligible to take part in the program rather than spend time in jail. The program is available only to those who do not pose a threat and who are charged with minor offenses. They must be willing to get treatment for mental illness.

The Youth Diversion Program is an alternative to incarceration for minors who are under the age of 18. In order to be eligible, the minor must be charged with a non-violent crime and it must be the first offense. The program helps rehabilitate the minor by providing life skill education, conflict resolution, substance abuse, and other education.

Contact Arnold & Smith, PLLC today to discuss the details of your case. We have helped many people resolve their cases and we can help you, too.