By Dallas and Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal
It’s now been over eight months since the Collin County District Attorney’s office revamped, expanded, and improved the Deferred Prosecution Program. The program is designed to allow people with clean criminal histories the opportunity to have an arrest fully expunged after completing a probation-like process with the Collin County probation department.
I have three observations/ updates to make since my last post about the topic in April.
First is that I seem to remember that many people admitted to the Deferred Prosecution Program (“DPP”) under the previous District Attorney administration were later removed from the program for trivial or debatable ‘violations.’ I have not heard such complaints about the new program.
Second is that the Collin County Community Supervision Department (probation) is extremely busy administering the program. Once someone receives an interview for acceptance into the deferred prosecution program, it is not uncommon to experience a delay before the interview date.
Finally is that the Courts are cooperative with the program — but are struggling with how to treat the cases which pile up on their docket. Most Courts are setting people’s cases who get accepted into the program for a ‘status’ six months to a year after the person is accepted into the program. This just means you might actually have to check in with the court after you’ve completed the deferred prosecution program.
Also, the District Attorney’s office is becoming slightly more selective in choosing candidates for the program (Okay, that’s four points). Multiple assistants district attorneys review each file before final approval, and approval is done on a case by case basis. Also, they are open to hearing from Defendant’s lawyers as to why their clients should be admitted.
*Jeremy Rosenthal is Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and licensed by the Supreme Court of Texas. Nothing in this article is intended to be legal advice. For legal advice about any situation, you should contact an attorney directly.