FACING A CRIMINAL CHARGE? PUT ME IN YOUR CORNER
Cropped image of male hands in handcuffs

ARE THERE ALTERNATIVES
TO GOING TO JAIL?

The Law Offices of John Della Rocca March 23, 2022

According to the Pennsylvania State Police, state troopers made 18,412 driving-under-the-influence arrests in 2020. Whether a DUI is the driver’s first mistake or a third offense, a DUI charge in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania should always be taken seriously.

After being charged with a DUI or any other crime, you may be uncertain about the impact the charges will have on your future. You may be wondering if the charges will lead to jail time or if there are alternatives to jail, and what your rights are throughout the process.

At my firm—The Law Offices of John Della Rocca—I make it my priority to answer your questions and to help you understand the possible alternatives to jail. I take my role as your criminal defense attorney very seriously, and I am dedicated to providing assertive legal services to all of my clients. With over two decades of experience, I know exactly what’s on the line.

The Law Offices of John Della Rocca serves clients in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the surrounding areas, including Delaware County, Montgomery County, and communities throughout New Jersey. Set up a consultation with me today.

Alternative Sentencing in Pennsylvania & New Jersey

Alternative sentencing allows those who qualify to avoid spending time in jail by completing different requirements. There are many benefits to alternative sentencing. The programs that defendants are required to complete can have a positive impact on their health, future, and communities. It can also cut down on costs for the state, which saves taxpayer dollars. 

There are several different types of alternative sentencing, including diversion programs, house arrest, community service, and probation.

Diversion (ARD)

Diversion programs offer those facing charges an alternative to prosecution. The purpose is to prevent certain offenders from entering the traditional criminal justice process. Instead, they will be diverted to a program of supervision or services.

There are different types of diversion programs related to misdemeanors, rehabilitation, domestic violence, drug treatment, DUI treatment, mental health court, small amounts of marijuana, and other areas.

For example, for DUI treatment, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office states that defendants who are non-violent DUI offenders with no more than two previous lifetime convictions for DUI and who face a mandatory 90 day or one year sentence are eligible to be considered for the diversion program pending approval from the District Attorney’s Office. 

House Arrest

When an individual facing DUI charges has committed an offense that is too serious for probation, they may be placed on house arrest instead. They are confined to a certain area and must wear a GPS device at all times for the duration of the house arrest. 

To be eligible for house arrest, the individual facing charges must fulfill several different criteria, such as being employed or actively seeking employment, successfully being able to meet with their supervising officer, and other similar criteria. Speak with a knowledgeable Pennsylvania criminal defense lawyer to learn more.

Community Service

Community service as an alternative to incarceration is when an offender works in a role that serves the community without being paid. Different types of community service include working at a nonprofit or performing unpaid work that serves the community. Community service may be combined with other alternatives to sentencing.

Probation

Both unsupervised and supervised probation are alternatives to jail that a court may choose as a sentence. Unsupervised probation is common for those who have committed a misdemeanor crime and who do not have a criminal record. Supervised probation may include reporting to a probation officer, random drug tests, and meeting other standards. 

How a Knowledgeable Attorney Can Help

It’s important to be aware of the different alternatives to jail as you navigate the criminal justice system. I will look at your case, explain your options and possible alternatives, and do everything I can to serve your needs. The Law Offices of John Della Rocca serves clients in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas in Pennsylvania, including Delaware County, Montgomery County, and communities throughout New Jersey. Contact my firm to schedule a free one-on-one appointment.