Do you or a loved one struggle with a mental illness? Has your struggle led you to commit criminal offenses? The Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion Program can help treat your mental disability and keep your record clean. This pre-trial diversion program is available to individuals charged with offenses in Tarrant County. If you are looking for attorneys with experience successfully admitting individuals into the Mental Health Diversion Program, contact us at (817) 203-2220.
Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion Program Overview
Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion Program (MHD) is a pre-trial, post-booking diversion program for mentally impaired offenders. The program offers offenders a treatment option that is judicially supervised. It is designed to divert mentally impaired offenders out of the traditional.
Screening Process for Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion
- Starts by referral. The referral may be made by the defense attorney.
- DA liaison reviews defendant for eligibility
- If approved for screening, then program staff will meet with them for screening and collection of data.
- The program manager will complete evaluation and her findings will be sent to DA with a summary of discussion and recommendation.
- DA will then decide whether someone is approved or not approve for the program.
- Applicant attends MHD docket for admission
ELIGIBILITY for Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion
- Applicant must be competent
- Must be functioning with more than behavior modification issue.
- Applicant must be out on bond. In-custody cases are not accepted for review.
- Applicant’s mental health diagnosis must precede criminal offense.
- Charged with a misdemeanor charge or low-level non-violent offense.
- Screening for program will not interfere with indictment
- The defendant must admit to the offense, express interest to get into the program.
- Applicant must express ability to complete the program.
- Drive themselves
- Have support system
- Will program meet their needs
- Mental health diagnosis must correlate to the offense charged.
- Does the story match the records?
- Any 3(g) offense
- Any gang Affiliation
- Assault Serious Bodily Injury (SBI)
- Delivery/Manufacturing Controlled Substance
- Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
- Applicants who need inpatient hospitalization.
- Applicants who lack the resources to participate
PROCESS and Expectations for Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion:
- Staff Screening/Data Collection process may take up to three weeks but is dependent upon the timeliness of medical records.
- MHD Staff meets with the defendant /orientation to explain program expectations (i.e.: what requirements are, sign medical releases for hospital stays, etc.)
- Records must pre-date the arrest date
- Will be drug tested (UA)
- Positive UA does not automatically reject applicant but could affect application process
- TCU screening instruments are administered to determine applicant’s addiction/stability.
- Records provided by the applicant are compared to TCU risk indicators.
- If indicators report “High Risk” applicant is considered for admission into MHD.
- TCAT “Tarrant County Assertiveness Training” begins for felony level offenses.
- The program manager will complete clinical interview.
- High risk eligible.
- Low risk is not.
- Once accepted through screening, a defendant will complete the application process by attending the MHD meeting and sign the required documents.
- Upon acceptance into the program, Misdemeanor cases transferred to CCC9
- Felony cases are “reassigned”
- Once admitted, defendant no longer has to appear.
PHASES for Tarrant County Mental Health Diversion
Progressive Sanctions (community service, jail time, revocation for not showing up or completing classes)/Therapeutic Intervention (rehab for drug abuse)
- One: Integration
- Two: Consistency
- Three: Reintegration
- Treatment plan
- GED Education
- Stable housing
- Engage in community
- Meet with case manager
- Mentally stable
- Avoid jail
LENGTH: 12-24 months depending upon the actions of the defendant
Conditions of Mental Health Diversion
- Must not commit a criminal offense for the duration of the program.
- Must not consume alcohol or non-prescribed controlled substances.
- Must submit to random chemical testing.
- Must cooperate with mental health treatment and/or counseling as recommended.
- Must take all psychiatric medications as prescribed.
- Must keep all appointments and attend all compliance hearings as scheduled.
- Must agree to report to MHDP office and all other appointments as directed.
- Must keep the program staff informed of any changes in address, telephone number and employer.
- Must consent to the release of protected information as permitted under Texas law.
- Must have no contact with any person of disreputable or harmful character.
- Must waive his/her rights to a speedy indictment, if charged with a felony offense, and to a speedy trial as provided for under the Code of Criminal Procedure of Texas, as well as the Texas and United States Constitutions.
- Must acknowledge that failure to comply with any term of this agreement will cause the State to withdraw from this agreement and proceed with the prosecution of this offense.
- Acknowledge that upon successful completion of the diversion agreement the defendant shall be permitted to withdraw the plea of guilty, the State of Texas shall dismiss the charge in this matter and the charge will be eligible for expunction. However, this result is applicable only to charges that were specifically admitted to this program in anticipation of a diversion and dismissal.
- Must attend monthly compliance hearings held in open court as directed.
- Must agree to follow any/all directives given by MHDP in accordance with their individual treatment plan and program goals.
Mental Health Diversion Program
Presiding Judge Brent A. Carr