Many people who get arrested on drug charges assume that they are going to have to go to jail and pay fines if they’re convicted. They understand that this can have a major impact on their future. They may be worried that having a drug charge on their record is going to prevent them from getting a loan or getting a job, for instance.
If you are in this situation, it’s important to note that Georgia does have special drug courts, as many other states do. This program offers alternative options to some offenders so that they can avoid jail time and fines – and avoid having a permanent record.
A treatment program
Those who are eligible for the drug court program are essentially put into a treatment program. This will last for the next 18 to 24 months.
The treatment program is going to be focused on addiction. The government understands that a lot of drug crimes are committed simply because the person who has been arrested is addicted to those substances. A treatment program that can break the addiction could theoretically stop future crimes from occurring, in a way that jail time and fines would not.
As noted above, though, not everyone will qualify. Generally, drug courts are only used for nonviolent offenses. Someone who is selling or distributing drugs may not qualify, whereas someone who was arrested for simple possession might be able to use the drug court.
At the end of the day, eligibility is decided on a case-by-case basis. That’s why it is so important for those who have been arrested to understand all the options they have.