You are down from college to enjoy the beautiful beach of Southwest Florida
and you find yourself arrested for disorderly intoxication after a night
of drinking went a little too far. Ashamed and embarrassed about the charge
and concerned over the implications it might have for scholarships and
future employment, your first move should be to consult a
Sarasota criminal defense attorney.
In many case such as this, if you are a first offender and you are charged
with a qualifying offense, you may be eligible for the Pretrial Intervention
Program (PTI). Most misdemeanors and third degree felonies qualify for
PTI. In cases where Florida Law does not bar participation in the PTI
Program, the State Attorney's Office makes the final determination.
In cases such as petit
theft, battery, criminal mischief or other crimes where there is a victim, the
State Attorney must also have the consent of the victim before placing
you in PTI.
Participating in the PTI program is like being placed on probation. As
a program participant, you will be required to enter into a contract with
the State of Florida agreeing to:
- Be supervised by a probation officer for a specified period of time
- Perform community service
- Participate in counseling
- Pay restitution to the victim
- Drug Testing
- Psychological evaluation if appropriate
- Any other appropriate sanction (letter of apology, no contact with the
Successful completion of a PTI Program will result in the charge or charges
against you being dismissed or the State taking no further action on your
criminal case. If you fail to complete the contract within the specified
time or otherwise violate a condition of the contract, your case will
be returned to court where you will face the charges and the full range
of consequences including formal conviction.
The primary benefit of successful completion of PTI is the ability to apply
to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for a Certificate of Eligibility
to have your record
expunged. With the Certificate, you may file a motion with the Court to have the
arrest either sealed or expunged.
When a criminal record is sealed, the public will not have access to it.
However, certain government entities will be able to access sealed records.
When a record has been expunged, entities that would ordinarily have access
to sealed records will be informed that the record has been expunged and
will be required to obtain a court order to view its contents.
Retain a Sarasota Lawyer with 17+ Years of Experience!
For more information regarding your eligibility for PTI, sealing or expunging
a criminal record, please contact my office for a free confidential consultation
by calling (941) 564-5319 or filling out the
free case evaluation form