According to the latest data from The Texas Tribune, there are 141,000 inmates housed in jails and prisons across the state. Of those inmates, nearly 32,000 are serving sentences for 10 to 20 years, and over 30,000 are serving sentences ranging between 5 and 10 years. The nine most common crimes committed by Texas inmates include:
- Burglary of a residence
- Drug possession (specified amount)
- Aggravated robbery
- Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon
- Aggravated sexual assault of a child
- DWI third or more
- Burglary of a building
- Possession of a controlled substance
The above offenses are generally serious under the Texas Penal Code, with them being classified as felonies. And, there’s a reason for this. The state has such a huge prison population, it has to prioritize its inmates. Meaning, the state prefers to house serious violent offenders over individuals who commit minor, non-violent crimes.
To control the inmate population, the state uses Pre-Trial Diversion programs. This way, non-violent offenders are supervised in the community instead of behind bars.
Does Denton County Have a Diversion Program?
Yes, Denton County does have a Pre-Trial Diversion program but before we go further, let’s explain what Pre-Trial Diversion (PTD). PTD programs are specifically designed for low-risk, first-time offenders.
If an offender is eligible for diversion, he or she must complete a set of conditions. Once the offender successfully completes PTD, their case will be dismissed and it will be eligible for an expunction. Meaning, the defendant can avoid the stigma of a criminal record.
What are the eligibility requirements?
- It must be the defendant’s first offense.
- The defendant has not participated in PTD before.
- The defendant did not commit a violent crime.
If you are eligible for diversion, the Denton County Criminal District Attorney’s Office would screen your case and if it decided to approve it, you would have to sign a contract with the DA’s Office, which would explain the terms and conditions of the diversion agreement. At this point, your case would be removed from the court’s docket.
“Which cases are eligible for diversion in Denton County?” The following types of minor, non-violent cases are typically eligible for diversion:
To find out if your case may be eligible for diversion, contact our Denton County criminal defense firm to schedule a free case evaluation.