PTI seeks to render early rehabilitative services, when such services can reasonably
be expected to deter future criminal behavior. The PTI program is based on a rehabilitative
model that recognizes that there may be an apparent causal connection between the
offense charged and the rehabilitative needs of a defendant. Further, the rehabilitative
model emphasizes that social, cultural, and economic conditions often result in a defendant's
decision to commit crime.
Simply stated, PTI strives to solve personal problems which tend to result from the
conditions that appear to cause crime, and ultimately, to deter future criminal or disorderly
behavior by a defendant.
The structure of the PTI program is straightforward. If a defendant complies with the conditions of the program and avoids re-arrest, then the case is dismissed. Conditions often include random urine testing, fines, community service, payment of restitution, and/or psychological, drug or alcohol treatment programs. Upon successful completion of the PTI program, the defendant will have no criminal record. If the defendant fails to comply, then he or she is terminated from the program and the case is returned to the regular trial calendar.
New Jersey believes that Pre-Trial Intervention benefits the interests of the public, the victim and the Defendant by correcting the underlying behavior and reducing the risk of re-offense. PTI is also viewed as a way to ensure the court’s resources are used to prosecute more serious offenders.
Eligibility is determined by the County Prosecutor’s office. A complete list of the factors are listed in N.J.S.A. 2C:43-12(e). Among them are Defendant’s age, residence, degree of offense charged, prior criminal record and prior participation in a diversionary program.
Applications to PTI should be made at the commencement of proceedings, typically no later than seven days after the defendant's initial plea to the indictment. If you have been arrested and are interested in applying for Pre-Trial Intervention, contact a Criminal Defense Attorney today to find out if you are eligible and to help you apply to the program. Call us today to set up a free consultation to discuss how PTI can help you.