Can I Do a Treatment Program in New York City?

women waiting in waiting room

If you have been arrested and charged with a criminal offense in New York City, you are likely worried about the outcome of your case. A conviction, even for a relatively minor offense, can have far reaching negative consequences in your personal and professional life. If drugs and/or alcohol contributed to your committing the offense for which you are charged you may be wondering "Can I do a treatment program in New York City?" Only an experienced New York City criminal defense attorney can evaluate the specific facts and circumstances of your case to determine if you may be eligible for a diversion program; however, some general information about "Problem-Solving Courts" in the State of New York may be helpful in the meantime.

The correlation between drugs and crime is a widely known and accepted in both judicial and law enforcement circles. Individuals who have a drug or alcohol problem often commit crimes when they are using and/or commit crimes in order to get the money needed to support their habit.  As a result, statistics show that as many as half the offenders housed in a jail or prison facility at any given time list "substance abuse" as a contributing factor in the commission of the crime for which they are currently incarcerated. With all of this in mind, the State of New has developed "Problem-Solving" courts that are geared at actually addressing underlying issues, such as substance abuse, instead of simply punishment. As of 2014, there are 146 Drug Courts located throughout the State of New York.

Each individual drug diversion program throughout the State of New York is an autonomous court, meaning that no two courts are run exactly the same way. Consequently, the eligibility guidelines are not the same in all courts. There are, however, some common eligibility criteria that are often used when determining if a defendant is eligible, including:

  • Your current charges cannot be for a violent offense.
  • Your criminal history cannot be too lengthy or too serious
  • A substance abuse problem must have contributed to the commission of the instant offense.
  • Most courts will not accept offenses involving the sale or transportation of drugs.
  • You must be willing to complete the intensive program.

Some drug courts accept only felony offenses, some only misdemeanors, and some both. Along with getting help for a substance abuse problem, the benefit to successfully completing a drug treatment diversion program is that the charges against you will be dismissed.

If you have been charged with a criminal offense in the State of New York, it is important that you consult with an experienced New York City criminal defense attorney right away to evaluate your case and get started on your defense. Contact the Law Offices of Adam Thompson today by calling (212)267-2424 to schedule your appointment.