If you have been charged with a second or third charge of driving while intoxicated, one aspect of your judicial appearance may include the possibility of drug court. This is a program that allows courts to oversee your entrance into a substance abuse program in lieu of jail time. If you have several DWIs on your record, it can be important to understand how drug courts work and how they might benefit you in the long run.
The Question of Drug Court
When you appear in court, the judge will likely review your DWI history. If there is clear evidence of substance abuse, he or she may offer drug court as a way to avoid serving jail time. While entrance into this court is not mandatory, it may be your only choice under these circumstances:
- Drug court is a condition of a plea deal
- You have a history of drunk driving convictions
- You have past convictions of drugs or drug paraphernalia possession
While drug court can provide you with a variety of challenges, it may be a better option for a road to recovery than jail time.
Choosing Drug Court
If you do agree to enter drug court, your case will likely be removed from the local courts and into a local drug court. There, you will appear before another judge, who will outline the program’s requirements and ask that you understand them. While details can vary by state, some might include random drug testing, regular meetings with your probation officer, and attending classes such as victim panels, where you will hear how drunk driving has impacted the lives of real people.
Navigating the Program
Once you are taken into drug court, the path to completing the program is likely to depend on your individual needs and charges. For example, if you were found to be high as well as drunk upon your initial arrest, you may undergo rehab as part of the program. You will likely see the drug court judge at least once a week, as he or she is responsible for monitoring your progress.
The Benefits of Drug Court
While drug court can be a daunting experience, it can also offer you a variety of benefits. Employment assistance, a better chance at long-term sobriety, and improved relationships with friends and family are just a few. You may even achieve a better quality of life overall when alcohol and drug abuse are no longer a part of your daily activities.
Drug court has both challenges and benefits that can change your life if you have repeat DWI charges. Call a lawyer, like a criminal lawyer from Rispoli & Borneo, P.C., today, or contact one online to find out more.