If you have been arrested or issued a Promise To Appear (PTA) within the City of Fort Lauderdale by a Fort Lauderdale Police Officer for a misdemeanor offense, you will be prosecuted not by the State Attorney’s Office but by the City Attorney.
You may be eligible for the City of Fort Lauderdale’s diversion program, which is similar to the Misdemeanor Diversion Program offered for all other misdemeanor offenses. The guidelines are similar. You must have no prior arrests of any kind. Your crime must be non-violent (no batteries or domestic violence cases).
The City’s diversion program takes 90 days to complete and requires payment of fees and performance of community service hours. Your case will remain open during this 90-day period to make sure that you do not get re-arrested. A new arrest is considered a violation of the program.
If you successfully complete the program, your charges will be dismissed and you may be eligible to expunge your record.
Some misdemeanors for which you may be eligible for the City’s diversion program are: trespassing, possession of marijuana, disorderly intoxication, disorderly conduct, resisting an officer without violence, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Eric Matheny is a criminal defense attorney representing clients charged with crimes in the City of Fort Lauderdale.