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Deferred Entry of Judgment in Orange County, CA

There are some cases that can be subject to a resolution process called Deferred Entry of Judgment. This is commonly referred to as DEJ. The process involves the Defendant pleading guilty to the charge(s), continuing sentencing, undergoing some type of education, and staying out of trouble for a specified time. Upon completion of the education and passage of required time, the Defendant can withdraw his plea, enter a not guilty plea, and the case will be dismissed. Additional requirements can be added to the process depending on the circumstances. For example, the Defendant can be required to provide a DNA sample, undergo drug testing, perform community service and anything else that might be appropriate under the facts and circumstances of the case.

DEJ is of great benefit to the Defendant. While it requires a guilty plea there isn’t any conviction because sentencing has not occurred. As long as the sentencing is postponed and does not take place there isn’t any conviction and the guilty plea does not stand as long as the DEJ is finished. However, the major down side to DEJ is the fact that if the Defendant does not complete the ordered tasks, the court will proceed to sentencing and the conviction is entered. No further proof requirement is needed since the guilty plea has already been entered and the court can simply proceed to sentencing.

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