How the Colorado drug courts can help those struggling with addiction

On Behalf of | Apr 26, 2024 | Criminal Defense |

Despite having a reputation for being a leader in drug policy reform, Colorado still prosecutes thousands of people every year for drug-related violations. People break the law by possessing and using prohibited drugs. They can also abuse drugs that are legal, including prescription medications. Mistakes involving prescription drugs or inappropriate conduct with prohibited drugs could lead to someone’s prosecution.

Oftentimes, those accused of drug offenses in Colorado feel as though the only option available is to plead guilty. They do not want to go through a criminal trial, especially if the state has seemingly strong evidence affirming that they violated the law. In some cases, those accused of a drug-related crime in Colorado could qualify for adjudication in the drug courts. The following are some of the potential benefits of going to drug court instead of pleading guilty or preparing for trial.

Drug court leads to treatment

In drug court, there isn’t a focus on proving guilt but instead on treating the underlying cause of a criminal offense. Only certain individuals qualify for Colorado drug court proceedings. Typically, they must face non-violent criminal charges and must be able to connect the charges they face to a substance abuse disorder. The drug court process in Colorado requires submitting to regular but random drug testing and undergoing substance abuse treatment. Addressing the chemical dependence that led to someone’s arrest could help them avoid similar issues in the future.

Drug court protects against a conviction

If someone qualifies for drug court proceedings and completes the process successfully, they can avoid a criminal trial and the consequences that come with a conviction. Someone who completes drug court successfully does not need to worry about a criminal sentence. They are not at risk of prison or other common criminal penalties. They can also avoid a criminal record that could reduce their opportunities. If someone qualifies for drug court and completes the process, the state does not report a conviction for the drug offense when outside parties perform background checks.

Discussing the situation that led to someone’s arrest and pending drug charges with a skilled legal team can help a defendant evaluate whether drug court might be a viable option. Those who explore every means of mitigating the impact of a recent arrest can potentially rebuild their lives more effectively after getting arrested due to the unlawful use or possession of a controlled substance.