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PDP & the Second Chance Law

Gavel
What is going to happen?
How much trouble am I going to be in?
What is the best possible outcome?

These are some of the questions racing through the minds of those who have been arrested for the first time. Lucky for you, the Pretrial Diversion Program was born, because many people consider Bloomington to be a beer-and-liquor-saturated college town, where hordes of students spill out onto the streets after the bars’ 3 a.m. closing time, and more than half of all arrests in Monroe County are rooted in alcohol, drugs or both. 1

Most first-time offenders charged with alcohol misdemeanors such as illegal consumption, illegal possession and public intoxication, as well as non-violent misdemeanors such as criminal mischief, disorderly conduct and possession of marijuana, are most likely eligible for PDP. If you successfully complete the program, your convictions disappear. 2

According to the Monroe County Prosecutor’s Office, PDP is a program offered at the discretion of the Monroe County Prosecutor’s office. It may be offered to Defendants without significant prior criminal records who have been charged with certain offenses. The program requires a defendant to complete a specific set of requirements, and upon successful completion the defendant’s charges will be dismissed. Moreover, depending on the circumstances of each individual case, defendants must also meet additional requirements ranging from various alcohol/drug abuse classes to substance abuse evaluation and treatment. Additionally, defendants will also be required to do community service or road crew and pay restitution where appropriate.

Will I have to put this down on college applications or job applications? Will this keep me out of law school or med school? If you successfully complete the PDP program, then you court record will show that the charge was dismissed. The best part of the PDP program is that there is no criminal conviction and you do not plead guilty.

Now, I’m sure you’re wondering, ok…this all sounds good…however, what about my record? Will this follow me around? Will I have to put this down on college applications or job applications? Will this keep me out of law school or med school? If you successfully complete the PDP program, then you court record will show that the charge was dismissed. The best part of the PDP program is that there is no criminal conviction and you do not plead guilty. However, there is one large caveat to this, although the record shows as dismissed, you still must answer questions to the affirmative about whether or not you have been charged with a misdemeanor. You will have to say, yes, I have been charged with a misdemeanor, but my misdemeanor was dismissed. Now you’re thinking, it would be nice to be able to have this PDP incident whipped completely off the record books? And I agree with you. Countless people make mistakes they regret while in college, but there is no reason to let this keep you from all your goals and dreams. The next step that we do at Lewis Law is see if you qualify for the Indiana Second Chance Law.

In 2011, the Indiana General Assembly passed two new laws, permitting individuals to seal portions of their criminal records. If successful, any case that has been restricted will not show up on a criminal history check by noncriminal justice organizations or individuals. Indiana Code 35-38-5-5.5 may be available to a person who has been (1) arrested for an offense that was not charged; or (2) arrested for an offense that was later dismissed; or (3) charged with a crime(s) and later acquitted of all criminal charges; or (4) convicted of an offense and the conviction was later vacated. 3

One of the greatest advantages of this program is that it is designed to keep the criminal conviction off of your record. Upon completion of PDP and Indiana’s Second Chance law, your case will be deemed dismissed and expunged.

For more information on the Pre-Trial Diversion Program visit the Monroe County Prosecutor’s Office Website.

1 Lane, Laura. “Pretrial diversion: Is it a judicial tool or a revolving door.” The Herald Times 28 August 2011. Herald Times Online.com. Web. 18 April 2013.

2 Id.

3 See also IN Code 35-38-8-1 through 7 is available to a person who: (1) Has been convicted of a class A misdemeanor or class D felony that did not result in injury to another person; and (2) Files the petition to restrict disclosure at least eight (8) years after the date the person’s sentence was complete and all obligations associated with that sentence have been satisfied; and (3) Has had no felony offenses charged since the completion of all of the obligations associated with the crime(s) for which Petitioner is seeking restricted disclosure; and (4) Is not a sex or violent offender.

Recent News

PDP & the Second Chance Law

April 18, 2013

What is going to happen? How much trouble am I going to be in? What is the best possible outcome? These are some of the questions racing through the minds of those who have been arrested for the first time. Lucky for you, the Pretrial Diversion Program was born, because many people consider Bloomington to [...]

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