Pre-Trial Diversion Program

Houston County district attorney Doug Valeska is trying to save the court system money by giving minor offenders a second chance.

Valeska has asked the Houston County commission to endorse a proposed bill that would set up a pre-trial diversion program.

The program would allow minor offenders to stay out of court. However, anyone charged with trafficking or distributing drugs, child abuse, a sex crime or any offense involving death or serious injury would not be eligible.

Valeska said the program could help reduce Houston County's $2.3 million annual bill to hire attorneys for indigent suspects. Valeska said pre-trial diversion programs are already operating successfully in other parts of Alabama.