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First Time Offenders May Get Off the Hook with Pre-Trial Intervention

First Time Offenders May Get Off the Hook with Pre-Trial Intervention

Posted By Posted By Parks & Braxton, PA || 23-Oct-2014

If you have been arrested for your first felony offense in Florida, you may be eligible for a diversion program operated by the Florida Department of Corrections – it is called the Felony Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) program.

The PTI program was designed to offer first time felony offenders the opportunity to avoid a criminal conviction by diverting their case from the trial court process. If you have been charged with a third degree felony, you may qualify under this program.

How does the PTI program work? Once you successfully complete the year-long PTI program, your charge will be dismissed. In order to successfully complete the program, you will be required to make full restitution to the victim, if applicable, and meet other conditions.

Do all third degree felonies qualify for PTI?

No, not all third degrees are eligible for a PTI program. No exceptions are made to defendants who have been charged with a nonqualifying offense. Examples of charges not eligible for the PTI program, include but are not limited to:

  • Any felony of the second degree or higher
  • Any violent crime
  • Robbery
  • Any weapons charge
  • Aggravated assault
  • Fleeing or eluding
  • DUI
  • Leaving the scene of an accident
  • Welfare fraud
  • Attempted residential burglary
  • Possession of LSD, heroin, methamphetamine, or one half gram or more of cocaine

Those defendants who have been charged with a qualifying third degree felony for drug possession and who meet the PTI requirements may enter into a PTI program. Further, a defendant will not be entered into the program if the facts and evidence indicate that the offender was involved in dealing drugs. All PTI participants are subject to random drug testing, and a single positive drug tests is cause for dismissal from the program.

Contact a Miami criminal defense attorney now!

Considering the fact that a conviction for a third degree felony in Florida is punishable by up to 5 years in prison, and up to $5,000 in fines, it is definitely worth your time to find out if you qualify for the PTI program.

If you are interested in determining your eligibility under this program, the State Attorney's Office highly recommends that you speak with an attorney regarding the benefits of entering into this program versus going through the court process.

To learn more about the PTI program, contact Parks & Braxton, PA. We would be glad to answer your questions in a free case evaluation!

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