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How do I get a pretrial diversion?

Schererville, IN |

I was recently charged with conversion in Schererville Indiana at a local Walmart the total of the items were $99. I have never been charged or convicted of a crime before I was arrested. I learned my lesson and now just want this to stay off of my record. I am a college student and I was told a pretrial diversion is an option with the help of a private attorney. I was also told I may not qualify for a public attorney because the campus job I have is paying for my college but I do technically still make a very low income of about $200 a month. Do I need a private attorney? Is a pretrial diversion even possible without the help of a private attorney? Would a public defender push for a pretrial diversion for me? What should I do?

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

You should definitely inquire into pretrial diversion. You can contact the court prosecutor to see whether you might qualify. If so, you do not HAVE to have an attorney to enter into the agreement, but remember that the prosecutor represents the other side, so consult with a private attorney or public defender if you have any questions.

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Asker

Posted

Okay, thank you for your advice. I called the court and they told me that I will most likely be offered pretrial diversion on my initial court date. So, I'm going to go without a private attorney. I was initially very intimidated by the 18 letters I received from private attorneys. The letters claimed I needed the help of a private attorney to keep this off of my record. So your advice was very helpful.

Asker

Posted

Okay, thank you for your advice. I called the court and they told me that I will most likely be offered pretrial diversion on my initial court date. So, I'm going to go without a private attorney. I was initially very intimidated by the 18 letters I received from private attorneys. The letters claimed I needed the help of a private attorney to keep this off of my record. So your advice was very helpful.

Paul Stanko

Paul Stanko

Posted

Those were solicitation letters you received. Keep in mind that they are marketing tools some lawyers (not me) use to get clients. They should NEVER be considered as advice.

Gregory A Miller

Gregory A Miller

Posted

I concur with Paul Stanko that solicitation letters (which I also do not use) should NEVER be considered as legal advise.

Asker

Posted

How do I contact the prosecutor? Do I call the town court?

Paul Stanko

Paul Stanko

Posted

You can do that. There is a specific prosecutor assigned to each town court.

Asker

Posted

I went to my court date and i was immediately offered Pretrial diversion before court even started. I didn't have to pay $1000 to hire a private attorney. I feel like all the 20 or so private attorney's that sent letters to my college just tried to rip me off to be honest. They told me the best chances I had to get this pretrial diversion was to hire them and I was terrified but this was not true. Being as though I was a first time offender I was immediately offered pretrial diversion. This means that I have to do six hours of community service and stay out of trouble for one year and the charges were dismissed. I also owed no extra money because all the fees were taken from my bail and was even refunded the remaining $71. This is a huge headache not only to me, but my family as well. It was not worth the stupid $90 worth of items I took I would say I definitely learned my lesson and was humbled by this whole experience. Thank you so much for your help!

Paul Stanko

Paul Stanko

Posted

You are very welcome! I'm glad my advice was helpful, and even more glad you were able to obtain that diversion!

Posted

On your facts, you certainly qualify for pretrial diversion and you do not need a private attorney. There is a fee for participating in the program, usually $150.00. Good luck!

If this information has been helpful, please indicate by clicking the up icon. Legal Disclaimer: Mr. Candiano is licensed to practice law in Illinois and Indiana. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Links: ccandiano@themargolisfirm.com http://www.themargolisfirm.com

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Posted

Pretrial Diversion is a program offered by the prosecutor's office. The prosecutor represents the State of Indiana and is your adversary in this case. However, given the facts of your case, I would presume that you would be offered pretrial diversion at your initial hearing or at a pre-trial conference.

It would be beneficial to contact the prosecutor's office and inquire about your eligibility for pretrial diversion. You may need the assistance of a private attorney (or public defender) if the prosecutor's office does not offer you pre-trial diversion.

Gregory Miller
www.fortwaynecriminaldefenselawfirm.com

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