Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) Program

Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) is a national model that was originally created to offer alternative solutions for addressing incarceration of addiction-related charges, including racially disparate impacts on communities. LEAD is a coordinated response process that supports officer discretion in diverting criminal violations to service engagement, for eligible charges, at the point of pre-arrest and pre-booking. LEAD is an extension of public safety that builds collective and systemic responses to unmanaged behavioral health challenges. This response includes trauma-informed care, wrap around services, and harm reduction principles.


LEAD services include service planning and coordination, intensive case management, and other individualized supportive services.


Referrals through LEAD happen in one of two ways: 

1. Arrest Diversion

The first route to LEAD diversion happens during an active arrest. Based on the charges eligible for diversion and if the individual consents, the arresting officer may use their discretion to divert the individual through LEAD. 

2. Social Contact Referrals 

Social contact referral means that an eligible individual can be referred into LEAD without waiting for the moment of potential arrest. LEAD stakeholders and community partners may refer an individual to LEAD who qualify for and consent to program services. 

Learn more about the LEAD Diversion Model


Eligible participants have low-level, non-violent misdemeanors infractions related to addictions or poverty, including low-level drug possession and sale (for subsistence); and other low-level crimes related to unmet behavioral health needs, trauma and poverty. 


  • No pending or active case in treatment court program
  • The individual is not prohibited by any means of an existing no-contact order, temporary restraining order, anti-harassment order or from making contact with a current LEAD participant
  • No juveniles (under 18)


District Level Charges

  • State Level Prostitution
  • DF4 Possession of a controlled substance (no intent to distribute)
  • DM1 Possession of a controlled substance (no intent to distribute)


City/ County Level Charges

  • Prostitution
  • Shoplifting (no restitution)
  • Trespassing
  • Disturbing the peace (no domestic violence)
  • Public fighting
  • Class 2: Sit and lie, camping, urinating in public, panhandling, curfew, obstruction, solicitation