Going through the traditional criminal justice system isn’t the only way to resolve a criminal case. There are alternative means to avoid going through a trial and resolving your criminal matter in the most beneficial way possible. The Alternative Court System is comprised of specially designed courts and programs that can help you resolve your case more holistically than it would be going through the standard criminal justice process.
The Alternative Court System in the 20th Judicial Circuit of Florida (Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, and Glades counties) is comprised of mental health courts, drug courts, veterans’ courts, and early resolution courts where participants may even be offered a pre-trial diversion program which results in a dismissal of the charges after the participants successfully complete all of the conditions ordered by the court.
For current or former members of the military, veterans’ court can be a great alternative to pursue in certain circumstances where it is mutually beneficial to both the State of Florida and the veteran facing criminal penalties to get much-needed mental health and drug treatment as opposed to traditional forms of punishment such as incarceration.
If the participants in these alternative courts fail to complete diversion, the prosecution may reinstate the criminal case, meaning that the case will likely be returned to the conventional trial court.
Early resolution courts often consist of non-violent third and second-degree felonies, such as simple drug possession cases. In general, early resolution court is an opportunity to resolve these types of charges quickly with plea bargains that are generally better the plea bargains offered in the standard trial courts.
What are the Benefits of the Alternative Court System?
Avoiding a long, drawn-out criminal case may be in your best interests. The Alternative Court System allows you to avoid costly and long trials by successfully completing treatment programs, pre-trial diversion, and more. Ultimately, taking this route can be advantageous, especially for first-time offenders. Having your case dismissed after completing a diversion program can be a much better outcome than taking your chances with a jury trial or taking a traditional plea offer. Contact a criminal defense lawyer today to learn more about the Alternative Court System and how it can help you.
How Can a Criminal Defense Lawyer Help Me Through This Process?
Every criminal case is different. To better understand your legal options and to see whether or not you are even eligible for these alternative court methods, consulting with a criminal defense lawyer in Fort Myers may help you move forward with your criminal case.
Is Going Through the Alternative Court System Right for Me?
The Alternative Court System may provide you with much-needed relief when it comes to your criminal case, especially because many of these programs will link you to mental health and drug treatment. If you are eligible, you may want to proceed through early intervention options rather than embark on a lengthy court case. Contact the Sherman Defense Law Firm, P.A. today to learn more about your legal options by calling (239) 284-5708.