DIP... Stuff

 Posted on June 12, 2009 in Uncategorized

The Harris County District Attorney's Office has not had time to talk to the defense bar about the outlines of the new pretrial diversion program for first-time DWI offenders, but it has had time to talk to the press (enough to convince the Chronicle's editors, clueless about criminal procedure, to endorse it), and now to the misdemeanor court coordinators. We now know the name of the program (DIP) and some of the guidelines and procedures, but we still don't know the single thing that will be most important to our clients: when or whether a successfully-completed diversion under the DIP program will be expungeable.

Following, for your commenting pleasure, is one court coordinator's summary of yesterday's meeting with the DA's Office:_________________________

Many of you have been asking meabout the new DIP program for 1st time DWI offenders. Well here is what was saidat our coordinators meeting yesterday...this is what has been put togetherso far (it may change – but for now – here is where Lykos isat) Disposition InterventionProgram

  1. Minimize Court Appearance during disposition period.

  2. Impose conditions based upon offender evaluation.

  3. Assure supervision criteria are uniformly applied.

  4. There will be specific sanctions

  5. There will be specific incentives

  6. PO will have ZERO discretion

  7. No second chances.


  1. 1st Offender, citizen, reside in Texas.

  2. NO priors in or outside of Texas

  3. Wrongful arrest does not count

  4. Inmate are elligible

  5. Juvenile or state jail felonies as a juvenile does not count.


  1. Any juvenile adjudication for 3rd degree felony or higher

  2. Out of state resident

  3. Judicial Veto can take place

DistrictAttorney Screening Process

  1. NCIC / TCIC

  2. Review Pretrial interview sheet

  3. View Video

  4. RIP, OR & Accident report

Pre DIPEvents

  1. DA makes offer

  2. Defendant agrees to evaluation (this will include 3 – 4 test ~ Urinalysis, SALCE test, risk / needs evaluation. (defendant will have to pay for all tests) Once evaluations are completed – recommendations are made

  3. Defense accepts or declines

  4. Agreement signed


  1. DIP docket

  2. Plea of guilty to specific punishments

  3. 12 – 24 month DIP period

  4. Specific sanctions for violation

  5. Conclusion: dismissal or punishment assessed.

  6. Everyone on DIP must have the Interlock on their car for a minimum of 6 months – if no car then SCRAM will be ordered.

ProgramTime Line

  1. 75 – 90 days from date of arrest

  2. DIP will last from 12 – 24 months

As of right now ADA's are starting to screen eligiblecandidates.

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