Many of the Courts and Prosecutors around New Mexico, including Albuquerque and Rio Rancho have Pre Prosecution programs for certain felony offenders. These programs are restricted to first time non-violent, non-drug trafficking offenders.
If you are charged with a non-violent, non-trafficking felony offense, and you have no prior criminal history, you may be eligible for Pre Prosecution Probation. If you are accepted into the program, the charges against you are dismissed, and you are placed on probation for one to two years.
These programs are very beneficial to both the offender and to the State. The program saves the offender from consequences of a felony conviction. The program saves the State the costs of prosecution, supervised probation or imprisonment of qualified first offenders.
The real hurdle to getting into the program for many is that the program requires an admission of guilt or responsibility for the charges. Many individuals have a very hard time with these admissions when they feel that they have been wrongfully accused. The decision is made more difficult by the fact that the admission can later be used against the individual if admission to the program is denied or if the person is expelled from the program for a violation of its terms.
Once admitted, the person must comply with all the conditions of the program including community service, full time employment or school, random drug testing, regular reporting to the probation officer, a prison tour, and payment of all probation costs and drug tests costs. A person faces expulsion from the program for violation of these terms. In addition, a person can be expelled for any felony charge, a charge of DWI/DUI or a charge of Domestic Violence.
Though the terms may seem harsh to some, they are far less severe than a conviction or regular probation. The benefit of escaping a felony conviction for most makes the program worth doing.