Criminal Defense in Arkansas is Bowman Lewis Law's Top Goal

First Time Offenders

Many of our clients are First Time Offenders or fit into another category of alternative sentencing possibility.  Our firm has successfully kept numerous individual records clean - either through dismissal of charges, first time offender provisions, alternative sanctions, or sealing of records.  Sentencing is complex, and what your attorney does not know can and will hurt you.  We spend countless hours of research to protect our clients.

In Arkansas there are several alternative sentencing options that can be used to keep your record clean.  Some have many requirements, and others do not. These options include:

  • First Offenders Act of 1975 (“Act 346”) § 16-90-301
    • This act allows a First Time Offender to plead guilty in exchange for probation.  Upon the successful completion of probation the charges are sealed and expunged.
  • Community Punishment Act of 1993 (“Act 531”): Ark. Code Ann. § 16-93-1201 
    • This act does not require a guilty plea, but you are not entitled to this act - your attorney must attain permission.  Upon successful completion of probation your record is sealed and expunged and your charges may be dismissed.
  • First-time Drug Offenders – Ark. Code Ann. § 5-64-413
    • This act allows deferred adjudication for a first time drug offender.  The Court can put you on probation and if it is completed successfully, you will never be convicted.
  • Drug Court
    • Drug Courts have many requirements, but if you are facing serious jail time they may be the best option for you.  Probation is usually lengthy, lasting three to five years.  There are many requirements and drug screenings.  Successful completion of the program can result in you receiving no convictions.
  • Veteran's Court
    • Veteran's Court is available to former service members for both Misdemeanors and Felonies.  Successful completion of the program can result in you receiving no convictions.
  • Mental Health Court
    • Currently this is a pilot program only available in Northeast Arkansas, but it is expanding.  It works similarly to Veteran's Court, but for individuals with confirmed mental illness.
  • Additionally, we are available to seek pardons for our clients
    • The rate of pardon approval in Arkansas is higher than you think.  You must wait 8 years after a conviction to get your gun rights back.


Each of these First Time Offender Acts have different qualifications and as well as benefits and drawbacks.  Sometimes attorneys correctly use a First Time Offender provision but opt for one that is less than ideal for your situation.  Not all of these options are available in all areas of the State, but when they are we know how to use them to benefit our clients.

We fight for your rights, call Bowman Lewis Law and (888) 674-5327 for a Free Consultation.


Arkansas Criminal Defense Lawyers Bowman Lewis Law

Bowman | Lewis PLLC
1719 Broadway Street
Little Rock, AR 72206
(888) 674-5327


Seth Bowman

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Bowman & Lewis Arkansas Criminal Justice Attorneys

1719 Broadway Street, Little Rock, AR 72206
909 South Street, Mountain Home, AR 72653


We take certain cases in all 75 counties.  Our practice is Statewide.  We routinely take felonies in the following areas.

Counties served:  We routinely take cases in Pulaski County, Faulkner County, Benton County, Washington County, Sebastian County, Saline County, Garland County, Jefferson County, White County, Lonoke County, Crawford County, Miller County, Pope County, Crittendon County, Yell County, and Baxter County. 

Cities served:  Little Rock, Fort Smith, Fayetteville, Springdale, North Little Rock, Conway, Rogers, Pine Bluff, Bentonville, Hot Springs, Benton, Texarkana, Sherwood, Jacksonville, Russellville, Bella Vista, Cabot, Searcy, Van Buren, Blytheville, Harrison, Mountain Home, Helena, Camden, Magnolia, Arkadelphia, Batesville, Hope, Monticello, Stuttgart, Clarksville, Newport, Heber Springs, De Queen, Warren, Crossett, and Morrilton.