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NCJ Number: 73768 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Drug Offender Diversion - Legal Issues and Administration
Journal: Contemporary Drug Problems  Volume:8  Dated:(Winter 1979)  Pages:475-494
Author(s): W C Schmidt
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: US Dept of Justice
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: P75-AS-45-A101
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Basic provisions and purposes of the Baumgartner Act governing the administration of the drug offender diversion program in Miami, Florida, are described; time and resource savings from the Miami diversion program are evaluated, and legal issues connected with the management of the program are discussed.
Abstract: The legislative intent of Florida's Baumgartner Act is to provide an alternative to imprisonment for individuals deemed capable of rehabilitation who have been charged with or convicted of violation of laws relating to drug abuse. Primary purposes of the drug diversion program are identified as rehabilitation, encouraging judges to refer eligibles for drug rehabilitation programs, and provision of an alternative to imprisonment. Although participants in the Florida diversion program perceive a savings in time and resources, Florida's program achieves little real savings because, unlike other diversion programs, there is often a conviction before referral. Florida's diversion program is thus an integral part of the criminal justice system. Contrary to the predominant opinion of 43 surveyed Miami prosecutors, public defenders, and judges, there is no mandatory provision counsel for those diverted, no statutory right to treatment for drug offenders, and no statutory provision for the least restrictive principle for drug offender divertees. It is recommended that clear warnings by diversion staff personnel to drug offenders regarding the right to decline preconviction interviews and to legal assistance in a pretrial setting be made routinely. Bail conditions for pretrial release should be avoided, and arrest records for successfully treated offenders should be expunged. Forty-two footnote references are provided.
Index Term(s): Deinstitutionalization; Diversion programs; Drug offenders; Drug treatment programs; Florida; State laws
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