For those who meet the criteria, the SMART program can provide a diversion away from the typical criminal process or allow entry into the program as an alternative sentence. The goal is to provide intervention and close supervision for potential defendants that would otherwise be processed through the system without adressing the underlying issues causing the encounter with law enforcement. Check out the original SMART program press release and below for a summary of the qualification criteria:
Priority Population: SMART prioritizes chronic misdemeanor offenders with acute drug addictions, mental health needs, and/or complex social service needs. These offenders have one or more drug arrests since Proposition 47 took effect in 2014, and have been arrested at least twice in the past six months for a quality- of-life offense. The City Attorney’s Office retains prosecutorial discretion in determining eligibility. The pilot program will begin in SDPD’s Central Division with the long-term goal of expanding citywide.