Our offices fight vigorously to have our clients enrolled in PTI, if eligible. Pretrial Intervention (PTI) is a program for first-time offenders charged with non-violent crimes and provides an opportunity to avoid the traditional process of ordinary prosecution. Instead the PTI Program offers rehabilitative services to deter future criminal behavior, and emphasizes the social, cultural, and economic conditions that enabled the defendant to commit the crime. If PTI is successful, the defendant will not have a record of conviction, instead they will receive rehabilitative services to correct behavior that led to the offense and reduce the costs associated with formal court process. The PTI program usually is for a term of one to three years of unsupervised probation. Once the term is complete, the matter is dismissed.
On matters that are more serious, such as crimes that carry a presumption of incarceration or people that have prior third and fourth degree indictable offenses, but not sentenced to state prison, we file a Compelling Reasons brief to the PTI unit. This is done to convince the Prosecutor to give us consent to apply to PTI. Our offices draft a 17 point document explaining the “Compelling Reasons” why our client should be accepted into the program. We go above and beyond for our clients by putting together positive supporting documents, such as a resume, letters from employers, and character letters to be submitted with the Compelling Reasons brief. By including this positive information, we ensure that the prosecutor is fully informed about our client’s background and all his or her positive attributes.
Our offices work tirelessly with both the client and the court to ensure the fairest treatment possible. Sometimes we will have a staff member accompany clients when they attend the PTI interviews required for the program. In doing this, clients feel at ease as they are not by themselves duing the interview process, and feel more comfortable with their interviewer. Moreover, PTI Applications and Interviews can be very overwhelming for people without counsel. However, with counsel such as our offices, we fight for our clients, and our presence at these interviews helps clients feel more comfortable during the process
If a prosecutor does not recommend PTI to a Judge for one of our clients, that does not mean the fight is over. If warranted, our offices will file a PTI Appeal Brief with the court. This brief is an extensive argument that we make to the Judge that delineates each reason the Prosecutor incorrectly argued in their rejection letter. This also allows our offices to demonstrate to the Judge that they should override this recommendation, allowing clients to be accepted into the PTI Program. It is difficult to overcome a PTI rejection and win on an appeal. Our offices have prevailed over our years of practice in doing so. If you believe your case is eligible for PTI and you would like to learn more, contact our law offices.