A deferred prosecution is, essentially, a recognition by the legislature that a person who commits an offense such as a DUI because he or she suffers from alcoholism, drug dependency or mental illness should be treated medically, rather than criminally. In order to qualify for deferred prosecution, a person must get an evaluation and be diagnosed as alcoholic, drug dependent or suffering from a mental illness. In cases involving alcoholism the person has to agree to complete an intensive two-year alcohol program and is not allowed to consume or possess alcohol or illegal drugs during that time.
The benefits, though, are tremendous. First, the person receives needed help and treatment. Second, if the person successfully completes the program, the criminal charges are dismissed at the end of five years. The person does not plead guilty, nor is he ever found guilty. He does not do any jail time, he does not pay a fine, he does not lose his license (although in almost all cases he will lose a CDL), and usually, he will not have to pay for high-risk insurance (SR22).
However, a deferred prosecution should not be thought of as the easy way out. It is a stringent program that requires a real desire and effort on the part of all participants. It is also important to consider that a person is allowed only one such deferred prosecution in a lifetime in the state of Washington. Therefore, we rarely recommend it for a first offense DUI.
If you would like more information concerning the requirements of deferred prosecution and whether you might qualify, you are welcome to contact the law offices of Kendrick, Malane & Webber. Kip Kendrick has over thirty-five years of experience in successfully defending thousands of DUIs and other serious traffic offenses. Emergency calls and initial consultations are free. Our fees for representing clients in their cases are reasonable, and we will usually work out payment plans with clients. Feel free to call Kendrick, Malane & Webber at 1-509-966-4255.
DEFERRED PROSECUTION DETAILS
Important: For traffic-related charges, a person can do only one Deferred Prosecution in a lifetime.
- No jail time or Electronic Home Monitoring.
- No loss of license (as long as the deferred prosecution is entered soon enough to avoid suspension through the separate DOL process and as long as you had a valid license at the time). However, in almost all cases, a Deferred Prosecution will not avoid loss of CDL.
- Usually, no requirement for high-risk insurance.
- Probation for 5 years at approximately $45 to $90 a month at least for the first two years: (Yakima County Probation is 5 years @ $90/month). In most jurisdictions, defendants meet with a probation officer only once or twice in the 5 years. Yakima County District Court requires the defendant to return to court twice during the 1st year and once at the end of the 2nd year, and again at the end of 5 years.
- 2-year Program is required:
- 8 weeks (3 times per week, 3 hours per session) (some programs are 4 times per week, 2 hours per session for 9 weeks; and some are for 6 weeks, 4 times per week, 3-hour sessions).
- After the first 8 to 9 weeks, weekly meetings for approximately 1 ½ hours during the next 6 months.
- Monthly meetings during the remainder of the two years.
- AA meetings twice a week for 2 years.
- 2-year program costs approx. $5,000-10,000.
- No fine, but $500 or more in court costs.
- Attend Victim Impact Panel (one evening approximately 1 ½ hours. Fee is approximately $45-$75).
- Ignition Interlock: Mandatory for at least 1 year for all DUI or Physical Control cases. Costs approximately $100.00/month.
- Pay restitution for the police officer’s “emergency response,” if any.
We defend people accused of criminal offenses and people charged with major traffic offenses. We appear almost daily in District Courts, Municipal Courts and Superior Courts throughout Central Washington. The information we provide on this Website pertains only to cases in the state of Washington, not any other states.