Does New Jersey Offer Alternative Drug Court Or Drug Programs For First Time Or Multiple Offenders?
New Jersey does offer an alternative drug court for drug offenders. The state has a thriving drug court that has come a long way. It used to be that you had to have been under the influence of drugs at the time of the crime in order to be eligible for drug court. Now, they have expanded the eligibility as long as the crime is somehow drug-driven. For instance, if you opened up a car to steal change, you were not eligible for drug court in the past because that’s considered theft. That had nothing to do with drugs. Eventually, they found out that drug-induced people were stealing to get the money for drugs. As such, the drug court has expanded to all different kinds of crimes, including burglary, theft, drug possession, and drug dealing. Some people deal drugs just to have enough money to buy and use the drugs themselves. Today, the drug court accepts people with armed robbery or a second degree robbery. Previously, you weren’t allowed in drug court if you committed a crime of violence.
People who take purses from old ladies and cause them to fall down and get hurt on the street could also qualify for drug court. That’s considered a crime of violence, but the person causing harm may need drug court more than anyone. They’re hurting people because they need money for drugs. Hence, they started allowing people who commit those offenses into drug court as well.
It’s a very structured program. You meet in drug court at least once a week, abide by any recommendations that the state sets up and pays for, and you’re given multiple chances at completing drug court. Drug court in New Jersey is a five-year probationary period. During those five years, you may be required to do an in-patient treatment, outpatient treatment, or other different kinds of things. It’s a very good program and alternative to prison for many people who suffer from some sort of addiction.
Is It Possible In New Jersey To Have A Drug Related Conviction Expunged Or Sealed?
In New Jersey, almost all the crimes are eligible for expungement. There is a list of ones that do not qualify for expungement. They’re generally more serious crimes, such as murder and kidnapping. Drug crimes are available for expungement. However, you only get one expungement in your life. And so, you have to make sure that you are done with your crimes. You can also only expunge a certain number of convictions. It’s only one or two indictable convictions and up to two or three municipal court convictions.
If you have a long-involved record, you may not be able to get them all expunged, no matter how much you turned your life around. We do a lot of expungements at my office. Not a lot of other lawyers do because it’s a tedious process. I always tell people that you can do expungements on your own. You don’t need a lawyer. There are packets in the county that allow you to do it yourself, but nine times out of ten, they’re going to come to us to do it because the application is about an inch. It’s kind of involved and nobody seems to want to do it.
For more information on Drug Cases in New Jersey, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (856) 499-8066 today.