December 12, 2018

Felony Diversion

 

 

Certain felony crimes in Kitsap County can be resolved through what is called Felony Diversion. In essence, Felony Diversion is a stipulated order of continuance where if the participant meets all of the negotiated and required conditions, the pending felony charge(s) against the participant will be dismissed.


Eligibility Criteria:


1. The participant must be charged in Kitsap County Superior Court with one or more felony level offenses.

2. The participant must have never participated in an equivalent diversion program in Washington or in any other state.

3. The participant should have relatively little or no misdemeanor / gross misdemeanor criminal history

4. The current offense must not be a “violent offense”, but those can be considered on a case by case basis by a supervisor in the prosecutor’s office.

5. If the crime charged resulted in damage, restitution should ideally be paid upfront. If not paid upfront, the participant must agree to pay the restitution amount in full during the term of the diversion program.

6. The victim should be supportive of the diversion program, but it is not required.

7. The participant must write a letter outlining why they believe they are a good candidate for felony diversion.


Typical Conditions:


1. The standard terms are to complete 48 hours of community service, pay an $850 program fee, have law abiding behavior, report monthly or quarterly compliance (if any form of treatment is required) and waive extradition.

2. The duration of the program is typically for one or two years.

3. If the prosecution believes that some treatable condition was a contributing factor in the criminal behavior, they will require the applicant to receive an evaluation. Based on the outcome of the assessment, treatment may be required. For example, if the prosecution believes that anger management or chemical dependency treatment is appropriate for the participant’s rehabilitation, then such programs are made a condition of the agreement.


The End Result:


Felony diversions end in the dismissal of a participant’s charges. This is typically a great result in exchange for the participant committing to the program and meeting all the requirements. Not everyone will qualify for this program, but it is almost always worthwhile to make the request.


Other Alternative Resolutions:


If you are curious about other ways to have a criminal charge reduced or dismissed without going to trial, click on the following links for an explanation of each:


Pretrial Diversion Agreement (not available for felony charges)


Compromise of Misdemeanor (not available for felony charges)


Behavioral Health Court


Veteran’s Court


Drug Court


We hope that this helps assist you in deciding what type of resolution you want to pursue in your case. Obviously not all of these options are available for each specific charge or fact pattern, so call our office to discuss the specifics of your case. Witt Law Group is a criminal defense and DUI defense law firm with offices in Bremerton and Gig Harbor Washington.

Published in Criminal Defense