People who are first-time offenders charged with a non-violent crime may qualify to participate in South Carolina’s Pretrial Intervention Program. The purpose of the program is to deter first-time offenders from committing crimes in the future. Not all first-time offenders qualify for the Pretrial Intervention Program.
Under South Carolina law, the following first-time offenders are not allowed to participate in the program:
- Offenders who participated or were accepted into the Pretrial Intervention Program in the past;
- Individuals charged with blackmail, or driving under the influence or with an unlawful alcohol concentration;
- Individuals charged with a traffic-related offense that only results in a loss of points or a fine;
- Individuals charged with a violent crime;
- Individuals charged with an offense related to fish, game or wildlife that is punishable by a loss of 18 points; and
- Individuals previously convicted of a domestic violence offense.
Specifics Of The Program
During the South Carolina Pretrial Intervention Program, participants tour a prison, perform community service, take educational classes, participate in counseling and make restitution to their victims. The solicitor places the charges for offenders on hold while they participate in the program. This means that a trial will not be held in their case.
In order to participate in the Pretrial Intervention Program, an offender must be referred by a judge, attorney or law enforcement member. Participation also requires submitting an application to the Circuit Solicitor’s Office and payment of non-refundable program fees. There may also be additional fees for counseling and drug tests, depending on the offense. It is possible for indigent individuals to have the application fees waived. However, if the fees are waived, the participant is required to perform additional community service.
At De Bruin Law Firm in Greenville, South Carolina, our criminal defense attorneys can defend you if you are charged with a crime and help you to apply for the South Carolina Pretrial Intervention Program if you qualify. Contact De Bruin Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation with one of our criminal law attorneys.