APPS is an alternative solution for non-violent offenders, allowing defendants to complete a self-paced home study program in the privacy of their own home. It features an intensive, 40-minute DVD that details what happens to an offender after arrest and offers techniques for behavior control. Offenders pay for the program, which must be completed in 90 days or before their extended arraignment date. However, prosecutors are free to adjust these time frames to meet their needs. Offenders must also complete a 50-page workbook that teaches everything from techniques for behavior control to getting and maintaining a job. It also illustrates crime’s impact on victims, and encourages offenders to set goals and build their self-esteem.
Charge-specific curriculum supplements and meetings must be completed for various alcohol, drug and sex offenses. The program is multilingual and offered in English, Spanish, and closed-captioned for the hearing impaired. In return for the promise of non-filing of criminal charges, the defendant must:
- Enroll in the program by completing a pre-test, and sign both an enrollment contract and a time waiver.
- Pay program fees.
- Successfully complete program materials.
- Pay any required restitution (or complete other special conditions as required).
- If the defendant is charged with a new offense within a year, or fails to complete the program successfully, the filing of the original criminal charge will take place
Returned programs are evaluated and referrals to other counseling or educational programs are provided where indicated.