The Sarpy County Juvenile Diversion is a voluntary pre-trail program for minors, offered by the Sarpy County Attorney's Office. Instead of filing criminal charges in one of the court systems in Sarpy County, the Juvenile Diversion Program offers youth the opportunity to participate in community-based programs as an alternative to court process.
All juveniles that participate in Juvenile Diversion are referred by the County Attorney's Office. The County Attorney's Office considers a number of issues before referring minors to the Juvenile Diversion. These include:
- Type of offense and criminal history,
- Circumstances surrounding the offense,
- Facts substantiating proof of the alleged offense.
These issues also apply to the Diversion Office's decision to accept a referral. If the child requires more intervention than the Diversion Office can provide, the Juvenile Diversion Officer can request that the County Attorney file a Juvenile Petition.
The juvenile and parent/guardian sign a contract outlining the diversion agreement. A juvenile will meet with a Juvenile Diversion Officer at least monthly to report on problems or accomplishments. Involvement in Juvenile Diversion is generally 3 to 6 months; although some cases may be extended. Once the minor completes his/her requirements, the charges are not filed in court and the matter is closed. Thus, the child has no adjudication record. However, if the minor fails to complete the Diversion Program Contract or has another contact with law enforcement officials, his/her case can be referred back to the County Attorney for prosecution.
After successfully completing a Diversion Program, a completion letter will be mailed to the client. A copy of the completion letter can be obtained, if available, by the client at the Diversion Office. A photo ID and five dollars will be required.
Carisa Gosda, Supervisor