Pretrial Intervention

Pretrial Intervention (PTI) is a diversion program established by state statue and upon successful completion charge(s) are dismissed and criminal prosecution is avoided. With the support of PTI, all participants are provided an opportunity to evaluate themselves and to make necessary changes for a more positive lifestyle.

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Who is eligible for PTI?

The PTI Act of 1980 states that PTI shall be appropriate where:

  1. The offender is at least 18 years of age;
  2. Justice will be served by placing the offender in an intervention program;
  3. The needs of offender and state can be better met outside the traditional criminal justice process
  4. The offender poses no threat to the community;
  5. The offender is unlikely to be involved in further criminal activity;
  6. The offender is likely to respond quickly to rehabilitative treatment;
  7. The offender has no significant prior criminal history.
  8. No prior participation in PTI

How does the participant enter PTI?

  • A participant is referred to PTI by the Solicitor, Summary Court Judge or Municipal Court Judge.
  • Prior to the scheduled court date, Summary Court and Municipal Court cases may be eligible to enter PTI as a self-referral. All General Sessions cases must be referred by the Solicitor.

If you are interested in applying to the Pretrial Intervention Program, please contact the office at (843) 915- 5365 for more information.

What is needed to apply?

  • Program fees in the amount of $350.00 (payable by money order or a debit/credit card)
  • Driver’s license (or another photo ID)
  • Social Security Card

What is required while in the program?

  • Report to PTI as required
  • Complete sixty (60) hours of community service work for a non-profit organization
  • No illegal drug use
  • Pay restitution to the victim if applicable
  • Participate in outside services if required (alcohol/drug education or treatment,  life-skills group, anger management, etc)
  • Complete all goals and deadlines

How long is the program?

The length of participation in PTI ranges from four (4) to twelve (12) months, based on the participant’s individual needs and goals.


Successful Completion

  • Upon completion, all applicable agencies are notified to dismiss the charge(s) (Solicitor, Magistrate Court, Municipal Court, Police Department, SLED)
  • Participants have the right to request expungement of the dismissed charge(s) at an additional cost of $285.00. Expungement is not a requirement.

Unsuccessful Completion

Should a participant unsuccessfully complete the program, the PTI file is closed and the court is notified.

Out of Area Participation

Participants who reside outside the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit and that do not wish to commute to the Horry or Georgetown County office, may complete their program requirements within their area. The participant must maintain contact with the PTI office by phone, mail, fax and/or e-mail. The case manager will assist the participant in locating resources in their areato successfully complete the program requirements.


Will my charge(s) be dismissed?
Yes. All tickets or warrants referred to PTI will be dismissed upon successful completion.
Am I expected to appear in court?
In most cases, you are not required to appear in court once referred to PTI. However, if you have any questions or concerns about a court date, contact the court or the PTI office directly to discuss your specific situation.
Do I need an attorney to apply to the PTI program?
No. You have the right to seek advice from an attorney. However, legal assistance is not a requirement to be eligible to enter PTI.
Am I eligible for the program if I do not live in Horry County or in South Carolina?
Yes. Participation can be completed in another county or in another state. All correspondence will be made by phone, by mail, by fax, and by e-mail.
Why am I paying a fee to participate in the program?
All fees are required based on state statute. PTI is self-supporting, receiving no funding from federal, state, or local government.
What form of payment is accepted?
Payment may be made in the form of a money order, cashiers check or online by debit/credit card. Cash and personal checks are not accepted.
When will I know if I have been accepted into the program?
From the time of application, the acceptance process takes approximately three (3) to four (4) weeks. During that time, we are assessing your application to ensure we have all information needed, a criminal history is run to determine if any other charges exist, and each file must be approved by the program director and the circuit solicitor. Once you have been accepted into PTI, you will be contacted by your case manager to begin participation.
Why would I be rejected from participation in PTI?
Your acceptance into the program is based upon your prior criminal history, any pending charges that you may have, and/or any new charges or arrests. Applications will be rejected for any prior participation in PTI or supervised probation (in any state). The Solicitor may reject an application at any time.
If I am rejected from the program, will I receive a refund?
Yes. If rejected, you will be refunded the $250.00 participation fee. Once accepted into the PTI program, all fees are non-refundable.
What is the difference between dismissal and expungement?
Dismissed means that the case is dropped and has been ended by the court. You will no longer be prosecuted. The dismissed charge will remain on your criminal history as a dismissal unless you opt for expungement, which is a destruction of the record. Expungement is a right, not a requirement.
What is the process for expungement?
Upon successful completion, you will be provided with an application for expungement by the PTI office. The application must be sent to the 15th Circuit Solicitor’s Office along with a money order in the amount of $285.00. Expect eight (8) to twelve (12) weeks for the expungement process to be completed at which time the expungement order will be sent to the arresting agency, the Solicitor or Magistrate, the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division the South Carolina Highway Department and the detention center, if applicable.
Will my bond money be returned?
If you were incarcerated and a cash bond was posted, this money will be refunded by the court once you have successfully completed PTI.
Will my mug shot remain on the Internet?
The fact that you were charged is a matter of public record. Therefore, your mug shot may still appear on the Internet. If you have your arrest record expunged, all information involving your charge will be destroyed by the criminal justice agencies notified. However, the Solicitor’s Office is not responsible for any third party companies that may have obtained a record of your arrest.