Deferred Prosecution

General Information Regarding Deferred Prosecution

Even though you have been charged with DUI, you may be eligible to petition (ask) the Court to be placed on Deferred Prosecution.  The Deferred Prosecution program is an alternative to conviction and punishment for those persons who have an alcohol (or drug or mental) problem and who will benefit from a treatment program.  If you are accepted into and successfully complete the Deferred Prosecution program, you will not be convicted of the offense with which you are currently charged, nor be required to serve any jail time or pay fines, nor will you lose your license to drive a motor vehicle.  You will be required to complete successfully an intensive two-year treatment program for your alcohol, drug, or mental problem, pay the costs of such treatment, and incur various costs and supervision fees with the Court and Probation Department.  Three (3) years following the successful completion of the treatment program, the charge against you will be dismissed, provided you have fully complied with all conditions of the deferred prosecution.

You may also be required to install and pay for an ignition interlock device for any vehicle you may drive.  The director of the department of licensing will place your license in a probationary status for 5 years from the violation date.

However, the Court will not accept a Petition for Deferred Prosecution from anyone who sincerely believes they are innocent of DUI, or who believes that they do not in fact, have an alcohol, drug, or mental problem.  Furthermore, before you are accepted in the Deferred Prosecution program, you will be required to stipulate (admit) to the facts contained in the police reports (including the results of any breath or blood alcohol tests).  Those reports will be used to convict you of the offense charged if the Court finds cause to remove you from the program.

You must and will be removed from the program (and be found guilty and sentenced without further trial) if you are convicted of any offense similar to the one with which you are currently charged during the Deferred Prosecution period.  And you may and probably will be removed from the program (and be found guilty and sentenced without further trial) if you fail to follow and complete the treatment program or otherwise fail to comply with all of the terms of the order placing you on Deferred Prosecution.

EVEN IF you decide not to petition for Deferred Prosecution you may always seek treatment from public and private agencies at any time without regard to whether or not you are found guilty.  In addition, if you are found guilty the Court may, and most likely will, still require you to enter and complete a treatment program even if you do not petition for Deferred Prosecution.  You may also be required to install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle you drive.

LCrRLJ 4.2(i).  Deferred Prosecution

A petition for deferred prosecution pursuant to RCW 10.05 must be filed with the court no later than seven (7) days prior to trial unless good cause exists for delay.  Sample forms for a deferred prosecution are attached below.  The court shall have the discretion to impose court costs at the time of the approval of a deferred prosecution.