What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

This is a discussion on What, exactly, does "diversion" mean? within the Drugs Charges forum, part of the Arrests, Searches, Seizures category; Hi there helpful peoples, My boyfriend was arrested and charged with a felony count of possession... He ended up being ...

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Old Oct 13th, 2011, 02:43 PM   #1
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Confused What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

Hi there helpful peoples,

My boyfriend was arrested and charged with a felony count of possession... He ended up being given "diversion" and had to complete X amount of hours of a drug class (which he completed) and was put on summary probation (for a year, I think...)...

That being said, what, exactly, is "diversion"? Does that mean the felony will be wiped off of his record once he is off of summary probation?

Any help would be appreciated! Sorry if I've posted this in the wrong forum...
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Old Oct 13th, 2011, 03:29 PM   #2
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Default Re: What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

I wish to inform you that diversion is generally provided to enable alleged offenders of criminal law to avoid criminal charges and a criminal record. In this your boyfriend may thus be either charged for a lessor offence or no offence. After successful completion of your boyfriend's diversion he may be released with nothing on criminal record.

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Old Oct 13th, 2011, 07:58 PM   #3
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Default Re: What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

Generally diversion is not an option for felony charges. Did DA reduce charge? Anyways here is brief summary of Diversion. Note these programs vary by state and county so he should talk to his Attorney


Pretrial diversion (PTD) is an alternative to prosecution which seeks to divert certain offenders from traditional criminal justice processing into a program of supervision and services administered by the U.S. Probation Service. In the majority of cases, offenders are diverted at the pre-charge stage. Participants who successfully complete the program will not be charged or, if charged, will have the charges against them dismissed; unsuccessful participants are returned for prosecution.

The major objectives of pretrial diversion are:
  • To prevent future criminal activity among certain offenders by diverting them from traditional processing into community supervision and services.
  • To save prosecutive and judicial resources for concentration on major cases.
  • To provide, where appropriate, a vehicle for restitution to communities and victims of crime.
  • The period of supervision is not to exceed 18 months, but may be reduced.


While the case doesn't ultimately result in your conviction, your arrest for the crime is still on the record. The plea doesn't mean that you pled guilty but it seems to be an understanding that you were likely guilty and you are accepting guilt in exchange for not having this appear on your record provided you behave for the next few months and you can generally go on your way. It's not the same as being found innocent or having all charges dropped without any probationary period. Perhaps this explains the process, at least as I understand it.
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Old Oct 14th, 2011, 12:29 AM   #4
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Default Re: What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

Diversion means a person who is charged with some sort of penal action will get a substituted programs instead of punishment. A successful diversion will ended up in dismissal of the concerned charges. Once the diversion is successfully completed the charges will be wiped off.
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Old Oct 18th, 2011, 01:19 PM   #5
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Default Re: What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

Thank you all for your little bit of enlightenment! That helped a lot!
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Old Oct 25th, 2011, 02:26 PM   #6
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Default Re: What, exactly, does "diversion" mean?

Hi there. I'll just chime in to add one caution. This depends a lot upon the jurisdiction as it varies. For instance, in one state you may walk away with no record, but in another your record will just reflect that you successfully completed the terms of the diversion. I would just be careful and make sure your boyfriend understands exactly what he is facing. Hope it works out wll for both of you.
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