The New Jersey court system processes an overwhelming number of cases every year. Every single case costs the State money and requires the time of judges, prosecutors, courtroom staff and other government and legal officials. As a result, NJ Superior Court prosecutors often agree to Pretrial Intervention (PTI) for first-time offenders, in order to direct their attention and resource to the more serious cases.
Pretrial Intervention is a treatment program designed to rehabilitate the defendant while preventing future serious crimes. PTI replaces jail time for offenders and upon completion, criminal charges are dismissed, keeping your criminal record clean.
Anyone in New Jersey may apply for Pretrial Intervention if they are charged with an indictable offense. However, whether or not the defendant is granted PTI is determined by the prosecution, assigned judge and PTI administrator.
If you want to improve your chances of securing pretrial intervention, contact the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Villani & DeLuca, P.C.
Avoid Imprisonment with an Experienced Defense Law Firm
The criminal defense attorneys at Villani & DeLuca can assist with your Pretrial Intervention application and help get your case approved. Partner Carmine Villani Esq. has extensive experience working with Monmouth and Ocean County, NJ prosecutors to secure PTI admittance for first-time offenders. Consult with our experienced team to determine if your case is eligible and find out how to keep your charges off your permanent criminal record.
Securing the criminal defense law firm of Villani & DeLuca, P.C., can help you reduce the risk of a prosecutor rejecting your case, as well as minimizing the total length of PTI that you must undergo.
Available 24-hours a day, 7-days a week for your defense, call Villani & DeLuca at (732) 709-7757 to start your pretrial intervention process.
How Does Pretrial Intervention Work in New Jersey
Benefits of Pretrial Intervention
The Pretrial Intervention program offers numerous benefits, both to the defendant and the State of New Jersey. As the defendant, successful completion of PTI allows you to avoid creating a permanent criminal record, which will help with future employment opportunities. In addition, defendants will avoid costly legal expenses that coincide with courtroom trials, as well as gain the help and support they need in order to avoid committing similar crimes in the future.
The State of New Jersey has additional incentives to encourage Pretrial Intervention. By utilizing the probationary and rehabilitative avenues of PTI, the state eliminates significant costs associated with pursuing a conviction in court and paying for the care of the defendant during imprisonment. Prosecutors are not forced to dilute their resources and are able to focus their attention on more serious criminal cases. Additionally, future trials and time spent pursuing repeat offenders decreases as intervention and rehabilitation efforts prevent further offenses.
According to NJ law, everyone charged with an indictable crime may apply for PTI. Typically offered for only first offenders charged with a 3rd or 4th degree crime in New Jersey, an experienced defense attorney may be able to help you reduce your charges for other offenses in order to qualify. These types of crimes may include heroin possession or distribution, forgery, marijuana possession or distribution, theft, and other minor charges. Once your application is submitted, the prosecutor and director of PTI must approve it.
There are specific criteria that state PTI officials examine in order to determine eligibility. These include:
- Defendant's age and motivation, history of violence or pattern of behavior, prior crimes or violations of penal code
- The nature of the offense, including level of violence, potential ties to organized crime
- Victim's willingness to waive prosecution in favor of PTI
- Whether circumstances surrounding the crime link to a condition that may be changeable
- Societal implications and pursuing the best interests of society and the victim(s)
- Value of treatment compared to best-case scenario for prosecution
- Effect of PTI on any co-defendants
Pretrial Intervention Process in NJ
Applying for Pretrial Intervention can be a complicated process, which an experienced NJ criminal defense attorney can help you navigate. Filing a PTI application is the first step in the process. After receiving your application, the defendant will be interviewed by a probation officer or PTI investigator. They will conduct a background check that includes any prior substance abuse, along with mental and/or psychological checks, along with further evaluation if necessary. This process can take between 4-6 weeks to complete.
After all background checks and evaluations are complete, the interviewer generates a report which must be reviewed by the PTI supervisor, prosecutor and judge. If all three agree to admit the applicant into the PTI program, the defendant is referred to a probationary officer. The probation officer has full authority to monitor the defendant, including urine and drug test, enforce community service and applicable fines are being met, as well as tracking employment.
A failure to follow all terms and conditions of one's PTI will result in immediate revocation and charges being brought before the court. After successfully completing the PTI program, charges will be dismissed and your record may be expunged.
Consult with Experienced NJ Defense Attorneys 24/7
If you have been arrested for a first-time offense, don't hesitate to contact the legal team at Villani & DeLuca. Available night and day for your case, we can help you keep your record clean and improve your chances of acceptance into Pretrial Intervention in NJ. Call (732) 709-7757 today for a free consultation to protect your future and determine if your case is eligible.