Pretrial Services is a program that provides background information to judicial officials at a defendant's arraignment. Investigations provide social, family, employment, and criminal history information to the courts in the City of Petersburg at the defendant's first court appearance. Recommendations are then made as to the status of a defendant's bond.
Pretrial Officers are available to supervise defendants released on bond and referred from Petersburg courts or transferred from any other Virginia jurisdictions. By providing drug and alcohol testing, weekly contacts, and opportunities for substance abuse evaluation and/or treatment, Pretrial Services is an alternative to holding defendants in jail pending trial. Pretrial services is a legitimate component of the criminal justice system, which decreases costs associated with incarceration and provides savings to the localities.
Individuals with a suspended sentence of twelve (12) months or less may be placed on local probation supervision following trial. The conditions of local probation supervision are generally established by the court, and may include drug/alcohol testing, participation in assessments, education or treatment programs, payment of restitution, completion of community service hours, or electronic monitoring. Several educational cognitive behavioral interventions are facilitated in-house, which are designed to assist offenders in changing their behavior. Individuals requiring treatment and /or intensive out-patient, will be referred to the appropriate provider(s) and the completion of treatment services will be monitored by the Probation Officer.
Supervision will typically last from three to twelve months depending on the specific requirements imposed by the court as part of the probation.