South Texas DA suspends second-chance program

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Associated Press

Posted on January 7, 2013 at 7:32 AM

BROWNSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A South Texas district attorney has suspended a pre-trial program intended to give a second chance to some first-time, non-violent offenders.

Cameron County's new District Attorney Luis Saenz says he found that more serious offenders were allowed into the program. So he will temporarily suspend new entries until the guidelines are re-established.

The Valley Morning Star (http://bit.ly/VMkLut ) in Harlingen reports that agreements made through the program before Jan. 1 will be honored.

The program gave defendants the opportunity to have their criminal charges dropped if they paid to enroll, performed community service and submitted to two years of supervision. When there was a pre-trial diversion agreement, judges would continue the cases until the end of the supervision period.

Saenz says his review should take no more than 45 days.

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Information from: Valley Morning Star, http://www.valleystar.com

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