Many states throughout the United States have struggled over the past decade with skyrocketing incarceration rates and an overwhelmed corrections system. As a result, there has been an increasing push over the years for alternative sentencing options which allow first time offenders and those accused of lesser charges to avoid a jail sentence. An experienced criminal defense attorney will want you to be aware of the potential options which may exist in your criminal court case.
Electronic Monitoring Program (EMP)
The Electronic Monitoring Program, otherwise known as house arrest or home detention, may be an option for those who have already served a certain amount of jail time or have at least 30 days left on a jail sentence. While not available for those convicted of violent or sexual crimes, it allows people with lesser offenses to remain at home, to work and be reunited with their families, while helping defray increasing prison costs.
Drug Treatment Diversion Program
With the national drug epidemic gripping this country, more and more states are turning to drug treatment diversion programs instead of incarceration for those facing non-violent drug use and possession charges. Typically, the individual charged is diverted into a community-based treatment program. This helps put a dent in prison overcrowding while still keeping the public at large safe and addresses the underlying cause of addiction.
You may be eligible for the program if you are charged with simple possession or use of drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and a variety of other substances. This option usually does not apply in cases involving drug sales, manufacturing with the intent to deliver, or trafficking.
Domestic Violence Offender Supervision
Offender supervision programs may be used in cases involving charges of domestic violence or child abuse and neglect. This involves a coordinated plan of treatment and rehabilitation which is closely monitored and a probationary period in which an officer verifies the offender is in compliance.
Another program for non-violent, first time offenders, administrative monitoring involves clients who have adapted well to probation and are considered low risk with lesser needs for remedial services, such as drug or alcohol counseling or anger management classes.
For juvenile offenses, certain types of traffic violations, and other lesser crimes, we may be able to negotiate a reduced charge with a sentence involving community service. This allows you to perform volunteer work in the community based on your specific skills, with the number of hours determined by the court.
Reach Out to a Lawyer Today for Help
An attorney will work with you in building a strong legal defense while outlining alternative sentencing options that can help you avoid a jail sentence. To discuss the best strategy in your particular case, reach out and contact a skilled criminal defense attorney to request a consultation and find out how they can help you get the best possible outcome based on the circumstances of your case.