Recent budget cuts in the California court system have resulted in closed courts, fewer staff and many delays in civil cases, but also in criminal cases such as drug arrest trials and hearings.
Deferred entry of judgment, defined in Penal Code 1000 PC, allows eligible defendants the opportunity to have their criminal proceedings suspended while they complete a drug treatment program.
Most of the time, the defendant enters a guilty plea to the charge. If the judge determines that the defendant is a good candidate for drug diversion, he or she will suspend the criminal proceedings. typically for a period of 18 months, although it may be as long as three years while the defendant participates in a drug rehabilitation program. This judgment could be further delayed by the recent California budget cuts that are causing substantial delays for criminal hearings.
A drug rehabilitation program is one that has been certified or deemed credible and effective by the applicable county drug program administrator. The defendant may request to be referred to a program in any county, as long as the program meets this criteria. However, if the defendant is not a resident of California, the judge may approve an online drug diversion program.
If the defendant successfully completes the program, the judge dismisses the charges and. with only a few exceptions, the defendant may truthfully state that he or she has never been arrested for the charged offense.
However, if the judge does not believe that the defendant would benefit from treatment, or the defendant does not successfully complete his or her course of treatment, the judge will impose sentence on the charges.
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Classes Available for California Deferred Entry of Judgment Penal Code 1000: