Diversion is an alternative resolution for certain misdemeanor offenses that allow eligible persons charged with these offenses to avoid a criminal charge and/or conviction on their record by participating in programming designed to assist the person with avoiding future offenses.
Each program is different, but most diversion programs require the person in the program to:
- complete a class or classes;
- meet with persons affected by the crime;
- pay court costs and/or restitution; and
- complete community service.
If a person successfully completes the requirements of the diversion program, the criminal charge(s) will be dismissed or not filed at all.
Depending on the type of charge and how it is submitted to the City Attorney’s Office by the police, diversion can be offered at three different stages:
- Pre-Charge (before a citation or criminal charge is filed with the court)
- Pre-Court (after the citation or criminal charge is filed but before the first court appearance)
- In Court (after the first court appearance)