Commonwealth v. NewberryAnnotate this Case
In this case involving the pretrial diversion of Defendant, the Supreme Judicial Court held that the language of Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 276A, 3 requires arraignment, at the Commonwealth's request, before a defendant can participate in a pretrial diversion program.
Defendant was charged with assault and battery. After Defendant's initial appearance before a judge she moved to continue her arraignment sot hat she could be assessed for eligibility for pretrial diversion. The judge continued the arraignment over the Commonwealth's objection and also ordered, as a condition of release, that Defendant stay away from the alleged victim. Thereafter, the judge determined that Defendant was eligible for pretrial diversion and imposed conditions of release. The Supreme Judicial Court remanded the matter for further proceedings, holding (1) under the pretrial diversion statute, Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 276A, 3, a judge may not decline to arraign an adult defendant, over the Commonwealth's objection, and instead direct the defendant to a pretrial diversion program; and (2) whether during the screening period prior to arraignment or thereafter if the Commonwealth does not seek arraignment, a judge may order conditions of release, including GPS monitoring by the probation service.