Established in 2018, Diversion is a pre-plea program of education, treatment, and/or rehabilitation that applies to cases involving violations of Health and Safety Code sections 11350, 11357, 11358 if the marijuana is for personal use, 11364, or 11365, 11368, if the narcotic drug was obtained for personal use and was not sold or furnished to another, 11375(b)(2), Section 11377, or 11550, or violations of Penal Code sections 381, 647(f) or 653f(d), or Business and Professions Code 4060.
Participation in Diversion requires a waiver of your right to a jury trial, right to a speedy preliminary hearing in a felony case and right to a speedy trial. In order to be eligible, you cannot have a conviction within the prior five years, nor can the current offense involve evidence of a violation of any offense involving controlled substances, other than those listed above. Your case cannot have involved a crime of violence or threatened violence.
Upon entering a plea of not guilty, criminal proceedings would be suspended in order for you to enter a drug treatment program for 12 to 18 months, or longer if requested. Upon successful completion of the diversion program, your charges will be dismissed.
Established in 1995, Drug Court, with few exceptions, is a pre-plea drug treatment program. In order to be eligible for Drug Court you must not have any current or prior charges for drug sales, possession of drugs for sale or crimes of violence. The requirements of drug court involve regular court appearances, drug testing and attendance at substance abuse recovery meetings. In some cases, participants are required to attend a residential treatment program. Successful completion of Drug Court may lead to charges being dismissed, reduced or set aside.
Established in 2006, Pathways is a Mental Health treatment court that provides assistance to participants including drug and alcohol treatment, as well as housing assistance. Pathways is a post-plea program that requires San Mateo County residency, a diagnosis of a serious mental illness (Axis I) with functional impairments, statutory eligibility for probation and a willingness to participate in the program.
Veterans Treatment Court: (Penal Code section 1170.9)
Established in 2012, Veterans Treatment Court is a post-plea court program that works with current or former members of the United States Military involved in the criminal justice system, as a result of a condition stemming from their time in service. In order to be eligible, you must have a prior or current membership in the United States Military and, with few exceptions, be eligible for Veterans Administration benefits. You must have a diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), sexual trauma and/or substance abuse or other mental health issue that stems from military service. Your charges must have been committed as a result of your condition and you must be eligible for probation and not considered to be a danger to the community.
Services may include mental health treatment and therapy, substance abuse counseling, health care, employment/job training and housing assistance. Participants are closely supervised by the Probation department and expected to engage in services provided by the VA. They also must appear in court for progress reviews, as directed.
Upon successful completion of Veteran’s Treatment Court, the court may terminate probation early, reduce a felony to a misdemeanor and/or the conviction(s) in the case for which you were participating in Veteran’s Treatment Court will be sealed.
Military Diversion: (Penal Code section 1001.80)
Established in January 2016, Military Diversion is a pre-plea program for current or former members of any branch of the United States Military charged with misdemeanor crimes. In order to be eligible, the court must find the defendant may be suffering from sexual trauma, traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse or mental illness as a result of their military service.
Participation in Military diversion involves participation in counseling and/or treatment and full payment of restitution. Attendance at periodic court review hearings will also be required. Upon successful completion of Military Diversion, the charges will be dismissed. A period of six months minimum and two year maximum participation is required.
Established in 1999, Bridges is an intensive, post-plea, outpatient day treatment program focused on drug offenders. Participants take part in classes addressing reasoning and rehabilitation skills, drug and alcohol treatment, vocational skills, computer use training and life skills. In order to participate, you must be eligible for probation in San Mateo County and you must have a history of alcohol and drug dependency. You can have no more than one current or prior conviction involving misdemeanor crimes of violence or the sale or possession for sales of controlled substances. Successful completion of the Bridges program will satisfy a mandate from the Court to enter and complete a residential treatment program as a condition of probation.
For assistance during regular business hours:
please call (650) 298-4000
Monday-Friday 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM
"If there is no equal justice,
there is no justice at all."
Chief Justice Warren Burger