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Diversion of a Kansas DUI

DUI lawyer Jay Norton discusses diversion of Kansas DUI charges, what disqualifies you from getting diversion, what the program requires and the dismissal of the DUI charge if diversion is successfully completed.

AI Transcript:

0:00 I want to talk to you about diversion in the state of Kansas for a DUI. If you have never had a DUI before, you haven’t had a DUI diversion, you haven’t had a DUI conviction, then you may be eligible for what’s called diversion in the criminal case. 0:17 You can only have diversion once in your lifetime for a DUI but diversion is a program where you enter into a written contract with the prosecutor for the city or for the state of Kansas and in that written contract you agree that you will do certain things and abide by certain terms and conditions, and 0:39 the prosecutor agrees that if you successfully complete all of the requirements of the diversion, that the charge against you will be dismissed. 0:47 So, diversion if you successfully complete it and the charge is dismissed, does not result in any conviction on your criminal record, and doesn’t require that you serve any time in custody, and diversion actually doesn’t affect your driver’s license, you don’t get suspended or restricted to an ignition 1:05 interlock device as a result of a diversion. You could still be suspended and restricted in the administrative driver’s license hearing the separate civil administrative proceeding, but as far as the criminal case goes you would not. 1:18 Effect on your driver’s license and your insurance rates cannot and will not be raised as a result of a diversion. 1:25 Most diversions are typically 12 months long. In order to get diversion, you’ve got to file an application with the city or the county attorney or district attorney. 1:37 The written application is usually, you know, name, address, phone number, all that stuff. They want you to list every time you’ve ever had contact with law enforcement. 1:45 You may have to write what happened. You may have to write why you’re a good candidate for diversion. You may have to give some explanation. 1:55 They give you an opportunity in those applications a lot of times to screw things up. So if you fill out that application and you don’t take responsibility, you try to put the blame on somebody else, etc. 2:08 That can cause your application to get rejected. But as long as you don’t have any prior DUI convictions or diversions 2:16 you’re probably eligible for diversion. The reasons that you would not get diversion or you’re not eligible for diversion typically are number one, if you were involved in a car accident in which anybody other than yourself was injured in any way, shape or form, and that can be bumps, bruises, cuts, 2:36 very small injuries, that can be a reason why you don’t get diversion. If you have a commercial driver’s license, typically they’re not going to give you diversion if you have a CDL. 2:48 If you were particularly nasty with the police officer, if there was some interference with the police officer, something egregious in the case, you know, whether to give you diversion is completely 3:04 within the discretion of the prosecutor. They’ve gotta have written policies about who is and who isn’t eligible for diversion in a DUI case, but ultimately, it’s up to the prosecutor. 3:16 They can and they can deny you diversion or they can add extra conditions in your diversion. Typically, diversion lasts for 12 months, and during that time, you’ve got to stay out of trouble. 3:26 Don’t violate the law of any city, state, country, etc. So, don’t get arrested. For the time period, which usually, like I said, is 12 months, you’re not supposed to drink alcohol while you’re on diversion. 3:41 So, that means no alcohol whatsoever at all. During the diversion, you have to obtain a substance abuse evaluation from an approved provider of substance abuse assessment evaluations and you have to do whatever that substance abuse evaluation says to do. 3:59 That can be a 1-day class. That can be a 2-day class. That can be outpatient treatment that lasts for 12-15 weeks. 4:09 You know whatever they recommend is what you have to do. And typically you also have to complete a Mothers Against Drunk Driving Victim Impact Panel. 4:18 And that is usually an hour and a half 2-hour program. Program. Sometimes it can be done online. Usually it’s done in person. 4:26 The Mothers Against Drunk Driving VIP Program. They have family members of people who were killed by drunk drivers come in and tell their story and you’ve got to to listen to that and and be present for that and then once you’ve done the the recommended treatment you’ve done the victim impact panel. 4:51 As long as you stay out of trouble. And you know don’t get busted for drinking or using drugs then at the end of the diversion period the charge against you is dismissed. 5:02 A lot of times you will be subjected to random urine tests while you’re on diversion to make sure that you’re not drinking or using anything that’s not prescribed for you if you have a prescription for something that’s not gonna be a problem but you know marijuana or cocaine 5:20 etc. Is always a problem. and then any medications that you turn up positive for that you don’t have a prescription for is gonna be a problem and alcohol is gonna be a problem typically while you’re on a diversion for a DUI. 5:34 Some of the places in Johnson County will put you on what we commonly call the color code. That’s a deal where you have to call into a phone number every single day or check a website every single day and that tells you whether you have to go take a urine test the following day and they’ll give 5:48 you one or two urine tests a month, usually at a minimum, sometimes more if they have some reason to to be suspicious. 5:56 So, you get a lot of UAs with some of these diversions, some of them you don’t. But you know they’re gonna monitor you to make sure you’re not drinking Or doing drugs. 6:07 If like I said at the end of the diversion period, you’ve done everything you’re supposed to do, they dismiss the charge. 6:15 So if you’re filling out a job application and it says have you ever been convicted of a crime, you can say no if you had a diversion. 6:21.You know there are some misconceptions about diversion out there. People say well if I complete diversion then it’s wiped off my record and you know treated as if it never happened. 6:32 That’s not really the case. Your criminal record will show that on whatever day you were arrested and that your case was dismissed pursuant to a diversion. 6:42 So there is going to be a record of the diversion. If you ever get another DUI in your life time there will be a record of that diversion and a subsequent DUI will be treated as a second DUI based on that diversion. 6:57 So diversion can be a great way to resolve one of these cases. it just depends on whether you know the the state can prove their case or the city can prove their case or not. 7:11 You know we want to do better than diversion when we can but if all else fails and it’s not a case that you can get dismissed or not a case that you can file motions and get get the evidence thrown out or otherwise set it up to go to trial and beat it then diversion is is an option that you may have 7:29 that you may want to look into and talk to your attorney about because it’s better than getting convicted.

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