Colorado is a state that has made major strides regarding drug crimes. Many drug crimes have been decriminalized, and the state has worked hard to recognize that drug addiction and abuse aren’t issues that will be solved with prison time.
This is why you may find if you’re accused of a drug crime that the court sentences you not to time in jail but to drug rehabilitation. This court-ordered rehab is an alternative sentence, much like probation, which means you must complete the program to avoid spending time behind bars.
If you violate your court-ordered rehab, what can happen to you? Read on to find out all about court-ordered rehab and why it’s something to be taken seriously.
Drug Courts: What Is the Purpose?
Colorado has drug courts for those offenders who may be suffering from drug addiction and dependency. The court orders drug treatment programs that provide counseling and supervision to those offenders to help them develop the skills they need to deal with their drug issues – and hopefully overcome them.
These programs work by holding those involved in them responsible for their actions. They also offer them the help that they need to heal from substance abuse issues in the long term.
Who Can Go Through Drug Court?
Not everyone is eligible for drug court. Anyone who is facing charges for large quantities of drugs or anyone with a long criminal history won’t usually qualify. Your attorney can help you to either be assigned to drug court if you qualify, or they can help make it a part of a plea deal with the prosecutor. However, anyone entering drug court must plead guilty to a reduced charge for which court-ordered rehab is a deferred sentence.
What If You Don’t Participate?
The drug court program in Colorado uses a system of sanctions and rewards to motivate those involved in it. If you violate the terms of the program you’re in, then you will be subject to sanctions. This can include:
- Additional monitoring by the court
- Additional meetings with your probation officer
- Additional hours added to any community service you may have to complete
- In the worst-case scenario, incarceration
If you are offered drug court, and you either refuse or avoid it, then you almost certainly will be required to serve whatever sentence the court has handed down – instead of working through any court-ordered rehab programs. In other words, you’ll go to jail or prison to serve out your full sentence.
Is Court-Ordered Rehab a Good Option for You?
Colorado has been using drug courts for many years to help provide interventions for those who are struggling with substance abuse. The truth of the matter is that people from all walks of life – no matter their age, income level, or race – have benefited from drug-ordered rehab. Talk to your attorney about drug court if you are accused of a drug crime to find out if it’s a good option for your particular case.
If you find yourself facing charges for a drug crime in Colorado, then make sure to bring a skilled attorney to your case as soon as possible. They can help you to navigate the legal system and fully comprehend the charges against you. They may also be able to help you find out if court-ordered rehab is an option for you.
About the Author:
Kimberly Diego is a criminal defense attorney in Denver practicing at The Law Office of Kimberly Diego. She obtained her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and her law degree at the University of Colorado. She was named one of Super Lawyers’ “Rising Stars of 2012 & 2019” and a “Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Colorado” for 2012-2020 by The National Trial Lawyers. Both honors are limited to a small percentage of practicing attorneys in each state. Additionally, Expertise names her to its lists of the 25 Best Denver DUI Lawyers and 21 Best Denver Criminal Defense Lawyers in 2020-2022. Ms. Diego has also been recognized for her work in domestic violence cases.