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The Florida Statutes

The 2018 Florida Statutes

Title XLVII
CRIMINAL PROCEDURE AND CORRECTIONS
Chapter 985
JUVENILE JUSTICE; INTERSTATE COMPACT ON JUVENILES
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F.S. 985.12
985.12 Civil citation or similar prearrest diversion programs.
(1) LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS AND INTENT.The Legislature finds that the creation and implementation of civil citation or similar prearrest diversion programs at the judicial circuit level promotes public safety, aids interagency cooperation, and provides the greatest chance of success for civil citation and similar prearrest diversion programs. The Legislature further finds that the widespread use of civil citation and similar prearrest diversion programs has a positive effect on the criminal justice system and contributes to an overall reduction in the crime rate and recidivism in the state. The Legislature encourages but does not mandate that counties, municipalities, and public or private educational institutions participate in a civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program created by their judicial circuit under this section.
(2) JUDICIAL CIRCUIT CIVIL CITATION OR SIMILAR PREARREST DIVERSION PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT, IMPLEMENTATION, AND OPERATION.
(a) A civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program for misdemeanor offenses shall be established in each judicial circuit in the state. The state attorney and public defender of each circuit, the clerk of the court for each county in the circuit, and representatives of participating law enforcement agencies in the circuit shall create a civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program and develop its policies and procedures. In developing the program’s policies and procedures, input from other interested stakeholders may be solicited. The department shall annually develop and provide guidelines on best practice models for civil citation or similar prearrest diversion programs to the judicial circuits as a resource.
(b) Each judicial circuit’s civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program must specify:
1. The misdemeanor offenses that qualify a juvenile for participation in the program;
2. The eligibility criteria for the program;
3. The program’s implementation and operation;
4. The program’s requirements, including, but not limited to, the completion of community service hours, payment of restitution, if applicable, and intervention services indicated by a needs assessment of the juvenile, approved by the department, such as family counseling, urinalysis monitoring, and substance abuse and mental health treatment services; and
5. A program fee, if any, to be paid by a juvenile participating in the program. If the program imposes a fee, the clerk of the court of the applicable county must receive a reasonable portion of the fee.
(c) The state attorney of each circuit shall operate a civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program in each circuit. A sheriff, police department, county, municipality, or public or private educational institution may continue to operate an independent civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program that is in operation as of October 1, 2018, if the independent program is reviewed by the state attorney of the applicable circuit and he or she determines that the independent program is substantially similar to the civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program developed by the circuit. If the state attorney determines that the independent program is not substantially similar to the civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program developed by the circuit, the operator of the independent diversion program may revise the program and the state attorney may conduct an additional review of the independent program.
(d) A judicial circuit may model an existing sheriff’s, police department’s, county’s, municipality’s, or public or private educational institution’s independent civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program in developing the civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program for the circuit.
(e) If a juvenile does not successfully complete the civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program, the arresting law enforcement officer shall determine if there is good cause to arrest the juvenile for the original misdemeanor offense and refer the case to the state attorney to determine if prosecution is appropriate or allow the juvenile to continue in the program.
(f) A copy of each civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program notice issued under this section shall be provided to the department, and the department shall enter appropriate information into the juvenile offender information system.
(g) At the conclusion of a juvenile’s civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program, the state attorney or operator of the independent program shall report the outcome to the department. The issuance of a civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program notice is not considered a referral to the department.
(h) Upon issuing a civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program notice, the law enforcement officer shall send a copy of the civil citation or similar prearrest diversion program notice to the parent or guardian of the child and to the victim.
History.s. 5, ch. 90-208; s. 1, ch. 92-20; s. 23, ch. 94-209; s. 45, ch. 97-238; s. 19, ch. 98-207; s. 19, ch. 2006-120; s. 1, ch. 2011-124; s. 1, ch. 2015-46; s. 9, ch. 2018-127.
Note.Former s. 39.0255; s. 985.301.