As local jails and prisons have become increasingly overcrowded, state and county law makers have been striving to develop more alternatives to incarceration for non-violent offenders. If you are being charged with a non-violent crime, or if you have already been convicted for one, a top San Diego criminal lawyer like Peter M. Liss can help you arrange for incarceration alternatives so you can avoid going to jail or prison.
While San Diego has traditionally been hesitant to resort to alternative sentencing in all but the most unusual cases, a recent California law may change this attitude. That’s because the law allows for many people sentenced to state prison for non-violent crimes to instead serve their time in local jails. As local jails continue to overcrowd, judges are finding alternative sentencing options like house arrest, work furlough, electronic monitoring and community service to be attractive options to traditional incarceration for non-violent offenders.
Your ability to acquire alternative sentencing will depend both on the specifics of your case and on the aggressiveness of your San Diego criminal attorney. With someone like Peter Liss at your side, you will maximize your chances of obtaining an alternative sentence in San Diego.
The most common sentencing alternative in San Diego County is work furlough, which allows you to spend your days working at a job that meets the program’s requirements and your nights at a dormitory living facility occupied by other inmates. You will be allowed to see your family more frequently in this program, attend school or church, and while most people in the program are required to take public transportation, some inmates may even be able to drive.
The court is also increasingly using SCRAM, a court approved private company which monitors house arrest. If you are sentenced to house arrest with this device, you will need to wear an ankle bracelet, but you can still go to work and return to your own home at night. The device is used for both detention and alcohol detection.
Not everyone will qualify for alternative sentencing, including a work furlough program and if you have been charged with a serious or violent felony, you will most likely be imprisoned if you have been found guilty. It is a particularly good option for those who have been convicted of non-violent drug crimes. If you want to know whether or not you may qualify for an alternative sentencing program, please consult your San Diego defense lawyer.
To discuss this option with top San Diego defense attorney Peter M. Liss, please schedule a free initial consultation by calling (760) 643-4050 OR (858) 486-3024.
Creative Commons Image by Jennifer Boyer