Division of Behavioral Health Services

Arizona Criminal Justice Diversion Project

The purpose of the Arizona Criminal Justice Diversion Intervention Project is to conduct a systematic and comparative assessment of the relative efficacy of a three-tiered post booking criminal justice diversion model for persons with serious mental illness and co-occurring substance abuse disorders in the metropolitan communities of Phoenix and Tucson.

The three-tiered post-booking conditions examined in this study are:

  1. release from jail with conditions,
  2. deferred prosecution, and
  3. summary probation.

In each of these two communities, the jail diversion programs has implemented by the regional behavioral health authority in cooperation with local law enforcement and judicial agencies. Specifically, this project has been designed to address the core research questions of when diversion works, for whom, and under what circumstances.

The Arizona site began baseline data collection in September of 1998. As of July 31, 2001, the Arizona site has completed data collection and had initiated data analysis. A final report will be written by December of 2002.