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Will I Be Sentenced to Jail if Convicted of a Drug Crime in Wisconsin?

Posted on in Drug Charges

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Since the 1970s, Americans have been attempting to fight what has been dubbed the infamous “War on Drugs” by the Nixon administration. To combat what was seen as the “greatest threat to American society,” many measures were taken in an effort to punish drug users, such as creating mandatory minimum sentencing laws for use and possession, among others. Nearly 50 years later, the country is just now starting to implement more programs and other initiatives aimed at actually rehabilitating drug users and offenders, rather than simply throwing them in jail. Not every state offers alternative sentencing programs, but thankfully the state of Wisconsin offers various diversion, deferred prosecution, and other alternative sentencing programs for those charged with and convicted of drug crimes.

What Is the Treatment Alternative and Diversion (TAD) Program?

In Wisconsin, the program that handles all criminal diversions when it comes to drug crimes is called the Treatment Alternative and Diversion (TAD) program. TAD funds these programs, which allow non-violent adult offenders whose substance abuse was a contributing factor to their criminal activity, to receive treatment for their drug problem in exchange for their criminal charges being lessened or dropped altogether, depending on the stage of the process they are in. The type of diversion program used, pre-trial versus post-conviction, depends on the type of deal that is worked out between the defense attorney and the state prosecutor. 

Pre-Trial Diversion Programs

If you meet eligibility requirements, your attorney may be able to negotiate a pre-trial diversion agreement if you find yourself facing drug charges. A pre-trial diversion agreement is very similar to a post-conviction agreement; however, rather than proceeding with typical involvement in the criminal justice system, the District Attorney has agreed not to prosecute as long as you fulfill all requirements identified in your needs and risks assessment. If treatment is completed successfully, the charges are often reduced or even dropped altogether. If treatment is not completed, the criminal justice process is resumed.

Post-Conviction Diversion Programs

Even after you have been convicted, a diversion program can still be immensely beneficial. Programs that use the post-conviction model function similarly to those of the pre-trial model, except the individuals who are in these programs have already been convicted of drug-related crimes. Rather than going to jail, these diversion programs offer substance abuse and other treatment services, as long as the individuals comply with all requirements and rules set forth by the court. If the rules and requirements are not followed, the individual is subject to normal sentencing guidelines.

Contact Our Waukesha County Criminal Defense Attorney

Being convicted or even just simply accused of a crime is a serious matter. You could be looking at years in prison with a typical criminal sentence for a drug-related crime. If you have been charged with any type of drug offense in Wisconsin, you should speak with our knowledgeable Brookfield criminal defense lawyer. Attorney Peter Wolff will put his experience as a former Brookfield police detective to work for you by examining your case and determining your best course of action. Contact the skilled legal team at Wolff & Sonderhouse, LLP today at 262-232-6699 to schedule a free consultation. We answer our phones 24/7.




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