Author: Federal Public Defender, CDCA

What is the difference between Track 1 and Track 2 in CASA?

Posted on June 9, 2017

Track 1 will lead to a complete dismissal of all charges with prejudice (cannot be brought again).  Because that client will not be sentenced, he or she will not suffer a federal felony conviction for this case.  All Track 1 participants should nonetheless know that the arrest, filing of charges, conditions of release bond, CASA guilty plea agreement and guilty plea, all program court appearances and the order of dismissal of all charges will be a matter of public record.  In cases where restitution is […]..

If selected, what does the CASA participant have to do in order to graduate?

Posted on June 9, 2017

All participants remain on their pretrial release bond during the CASA Program.  A standard condition of all bonds is to obey all laws, not use or possess controlled substances or alcohol, and report as directed to the CASA PSA officer. For many, this will also include drug testing, drug and/or mental health counseling and treatment.  Drug treatment can range from residential, to intensive outpatient and periodic individual and/or group counseling sessions, and twelve step fellowship meetings.  Other mental health counseling services may also be scheduled […]..

Are there incentives and sanctions during participation in CASA?

Posted on June 9, 2017

Yes!  Although the most obvious incentive is a dismissal or a sentence of probation rather than prison, program participants are also provided with incentives in the form of gift cards and limited Second Chance Act support for school or work-related expenses when available. Depending on the nature of the program violation, sanctions may range from a verbal reprimand from the court and team, additional assignments and requirements, a short term of “flash incarceration”, or the involuntary termination from CASA and the imposition of sentence as […]..

What Is a Material Witness?

Posted on June 9, 2017

A material witness is a person whose testimony is material to a criminal proceeding, and where it appears from an affidavit filed by a party that this person’s presence for testimony cannot be secured by a subpoena. A judge can order the person arrested, but also order that s/he be released from custody if certain conditions are met. 18 USC section 3144...