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Is drug court an option after a drug conviction in Iowa?

Drug charges in Iowa are no laughing matter. People who are convicted of drug possession or other drug crimes may face serious consequences, including prison time. Fortunately, though, several judicial districts in Iowa have developed specialized drug diversion programs, which deal specifically with people who are convicted of aggravated misdemeanor or felony drug charges.

Drug court may be a beneficial solution for people who face the prospect of a drug conviction. By pleading guilty or undergoing a diversion and agreeing to enter drug court, people may be able to avoid prison and serve their sentence under supervision in the community. However, people who do not comply with the drug court program may find themselves facing incarceration, so people who aren't serious about getting their drug issues taken care of might not find drug court to be the ideal option.

The drug court program in Iowa can last anywhere from 12 months to as long as two years or more, but the average length of participation is approximately 18 months. The program can be quite stringent, and requires cooperation at every step of the way. Nonetheless, it can be very helpful for people who face substance abuse problems, and those who struggle with drug problems should be able to take personal advantage of what the program offers. Drug court services may include mental health counseling, substance abuse counseling, medical and clinical support and other forms of assistance and support that can help people conquer their drug addiction issues.

An experienced criminal defense attorney can help people accused of drug crimes defend themselves from the charges against them or negotiate for a minimal sentence. People may also want to talk to their defense attorney about the possibility of entering into drug court to avoid incarceration.

Source: Iowacbc.org, "Drug Treatment Court," accessed on Aug. 29, 2014

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