Individuals that have been convicted of a crime can at times be granted the opportunity to participate in a program in contrast to doing jail time. An experienced DUI attorney that is familiar with the law in their area can often negotiate on behalf of their client and mitigate the penalties set by the court. In some scenarios, an individual will be required to participate in a diversion program, such as a Victim Impact Panel, as a form of rehabilitation.
A Victim Impact Panel is a group of individuals who have been victims of DUIs in the past and speak to people who have been convicted of DUIs through the Alcohol Safety Action Program. They do this in hopes of helping individuals involved in the program understand the impact of their decisions to drink and drive.
It is important to understand that the elements of a diversion program are based on its jurisdiction. Typically, the individuals on an impact panel will relay experiences of tragedy; the panel sometimes consists of individuals convicted of a DUI who share the consequences of their actions. This will usually take place during the Alcohol Safety Action Program, and the people on the panel will speak with the individuals who have been mandated by the court to participate in the program.
A Victim Impact Panel is organized through the Alcohol Safety Action Program, and it’s not a government program per se. It is usually organized through a local organization, but it may sometimes be organized through MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving).
There are no Victim Impact Panels in Dale City specifically. They are generally located in Prince William County and they do not play a role in any of the Dale City DUI cases. They only play a role during post-conviction and Alcohol Safety Action Program meetings where those that have been convicted come in and talk to people who have been impacted by a DUI. Part of the treatment process is helping an individual understand the consequences of his or her actions.
The victim impact panel is not separate from the Alcohol Safety Action Program; it is a part of ASAP. ASAP usually takes place during the work week in the evening, right after typical working hours. The time varies. In certain situations, an individual will have to take off during the day in order to do certain ASAP activities but usually, a person who has been convicted of a drug or alcohol-related offense and is required to attend a participate in a diversion program is not going to have to take time away from work.
The Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program is a court-ordered program that is run by a local government agency in Prince William County. In most jurisdictions, it is overseen by the Sheriff’s Department. This program is an educational resource for individuals who are convicted of DUI’s.
An individual who has been mandated by the court to attend an Alcohol Safety program is required to take part in ten different sessions; he or she must pay an extra fee to register for the program. In some cases, an individual may choose to pre-enroll in the program, but they can only do so if they have been charged with a DUI or marijuana offense.
Some individuals who have been charged and later convicted of a DUI often wonder if they are required to attend traffic school, as well as ASAP. The court will never order a person to attend traffic school as a result of a DUI. They will, however, order a person into ASAP because it’s required by statute.
An individual that has been required to participate in the Alcohol Safety program will be assessed through a process known as intake. Based on the specific needs of the individual, which is identified during intake, it will be determined whether a person will be required to attend group meetings or one-on-one sessions. This decision also depends on what the program moderators believe the participants’ threat level is for re-offending, as well as his or her likelihood to re-engage in alcohol abuse, drug abuse, etc.
If an individual has been mandated by the court to attend ASAP, which stands for the Alcohol Safety Action Program, there are no other alternatives; the program is only available in person. While there are various programs that are available through private organizations that a person can pay to do online, there is no online program sanctioned by the court. Also, it is important to note that online classes are generally not taken seriously by prosecutors.
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