Drug courts are a newer idea in criminal justice. They focus on helping you if you face a drug charge rather than punishing you.
Going through drug court can be a second chance. It can enable you to change your life and head down a better path. According to the Ninth Circuit Solicitor’s Office, drug court provides a supervised rehabilitation option that allows you to avoid prison time and other criminal punishments.
To qualify for drug court as an option in your case, you must have a drug or alcohol addiction and currently face charges. You also must apply to be in the program, which requires paying an application fee.
Once you enter the program, you will be under the supervision of the court and various other professionals. You must adhere to all requirements set by the court, which may include attending counseling, conducting community service, taking drug tests and finding employment.
There are two main benefits of attending drug court. First, you get access to help for your drug or alcohol addiction that can help you to end your substance abuse. Second, when you complete the program, the prosecutor will drop the charges against you. You end up with no criminal record.
Do be aware that if you do not complete the program, the court will automatically convict you of the charges. You will face sentencing as well.
The benefits to the state are lower costs for incarceration and the ability to assist individuals who make a mistake from ending up within the criminal justice system where repeat offending is common.