First Time Offenders: A Jail Story
In 2011, a young man was preparing to spend 3-6 months in prison for a crime he never committed. Despite admitting that he was driving recklessly, this young man was convicted of “eluding” police after being intimidated into admitting to such by police officers. After spending the day in court watching the judge sentence offenders for driving under the influence to lesser sentences than he received, he asks us: “What is the logic behind sending someone with a great career, no prior record, and a perfect driving score to jail for the full time on a non-violent first offense?” There is little, and if he had a stronger New Jersey criminal defense lawyer, he may have been able to avoid this result.
New Jersey First-Time Offender Policy
In New Jersey, the Pretrial Intervention Program (PTI) provides first-time criminal offenders with the opportunity to avoid prosecution for non-violent first-time offenses. If the offender is accepted into and successfully completes the PTI program, he or she qualifies for the following benefits:
- Dismissal of the original charges;
- No record of conviction;
- Reduction or elimination of court costs;
- Rehabilitative services designed to address the specific offense; and
- Speedy resolution of the case.
If you are a non-violent first-time offender and believe you may qualify for admittance into the PTI program, it is important to contact a New Jersey criminal defense lawyer immediately upon the commencement of proceedings in New Jersey criminal court.
Benefits of Attorney Assistance
Although avoiding jail time and hefty court fees are certainly beneficial to any offender, one of the greatest benefits of completing the PTI program is elimination of your criminal record. In other words, you will have no criminal record or the stigma that is attached to such. Unlike the attorney in the case of the young man discussed above, because PTI is also beneficial to New Jersey courts in that it reduces their already heavy caseload, a qualified New Jersey criminal defense attorney can help you apply to the PTI program within the necessary time frame, assist you with the required interview, and help you abide by and complete all PTI requirements.
Do Not Hesitate: Contact a New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorney Today
If you believe you may qualify for the New Jersey PTI program, contact an experienced New Jersey criminal defense attorney immediately. The benefits of New Jersey’s program are exponential, and there is no substitute for having a qualified advocate on your side. John C. Iannelli, Attorney at Law is your go-to New Jersey criminal defense attorney for first-time offenders. He understands the nature and benefits of the New Jersey PTI program, and he is here to help you avoid further harm. Call 856-227-2434 today for a confidential, free consultation.