(a) In this chapter, “veterans treatment court program” means a program that has the following essential characteristics:
(1) the integration of services in the processing of cases in the judicial system;
(2) the use of a nonadversarial approach involving prosecutors and defense attorneys to promote public safety and to protect the due process rights of program participants;
(3) early identification and prompt placement of eligible participants in the program;
(4) access to a continuum of alcohol, controlled substance, mental health, and other related treatment and rehabilitative services;
(5) careful monitoring of treatment and services provided to program participants;
(6) a coordinated strategy to govern program responses to participants' compliance;
(7) ongoing judicial interaction with program participants;
(8) monitoring and evaluation of program goals and effectiveness;
(9) continuing interdisciplinary education to promote effective program planning, implementation, and operations;
(10) development of partnerships with public agencies and community organizations, including the United States Department of Veterans Affairs; and
(11) inclusion of a participant's family members who agree to be involved in the treatment and services provided to the participant under the program.
(b) If a defendant who was arrested for or charged with, but not convicted of or placed on deferred adjudication community supervision for, an offense successfully completes a veterans treatment court program, after notice to the attorney representing the state and a hearing in the veterans treatment court at which that court determines that a dismissal is in the best interest of justice, the veterans treatment court shall provide to the court in which the criminal case is pending information about the dismissal and shall include all of the information required about the defendant for a petition for expunction under Section 2(b), Article 55.02, Code of Criminal Procedure . The court in which the criminal case is pending shall dismiss the case against the defendant and:
(1) if that trial court is a district court, the court may, with the consent of the attorney representing the state, enter an order of expunction on behalf of the defendant under Section 1a(a-1), Article 55.02, Code of Criminal Procedure ; or
(2) if that trial court is not a district court, the court may, with the consent of the attorney representing the state, forward the appropriate dismissal and expunction information to enable a district court with jurisdiction to enter an order of expunction on behalf of the defendant under Section 1a(a-1), Article 55.02, Code of Criminal Procedure .
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