Is conditional the only type of diversion in the Juvenile Justice system?

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belarafon eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Law Enforcement, Diversion is one of the processes by which a suspect is released from charges. Diversion is usually instigated by the prosecutor, who may decide that the suspect is cleared by evidence, is not culpable for action, or is unlikely to commit a crime again. Regardless of circumstance, the prosecutor may ask for Conditional or Non-conditional diversion.

Non-conditional Diversion is basically a full release. There are no conditions put on the suspect's behavior, and the suspect is essentially free to go.

Conditional Diversion is release with conditions; the suspect may go free, but he may have to perform community service, wear an ankle monitor, or appear in meetings or court a certain number of times. This is a guard against recidivist behavior (the tendency to repeat criminal activity).

In Juvenile Justice, Conditional Diversion is more common than Non-conditional. It is considered a fair warning against a first or early offender to change his behavior or the next arrest will not be as lenient. Common conditions for juveniles are community service, attendance in Youth Support groups, and probation pending a review of the case and subsequent activity.