A violation of probation exposes the client to potentially greater punishment in jail than for the original criminal charge.
The grounds for violating probation fall into several distinct categories:
- A charge of a new criminal offense, separate from the original case which is now the subject of an alleged violation of probation. Even if the new offense is not actually charged by the District Attorney as a new case, the facts of the new incident may be used to support a violation of probation.
- Failure to appear for a variety of court-required appointments such as further court appearances, sheriff’s work alternative program (SWAP), AA meetings and proof thereof, and worst of all, missing an appointment with your probation officer.
- Failure to pay your fine or to enroll or complete a court-required rehabilitation program (such as a Drinking Driver program).
Probationers are entitled to a court hearing with many of the same rights that one has in a criminal jury trial, but not all. Probationers are not entitled to a jury, they may be held longer in custody before any hearing takes place, and the burden of proof on the government is lower, thus making the violation is easier to prove against you.
DUI probation violations are the most common, if for no other reason than their relative number compared to other cases. If the alleges violation involves a new episode of the client drinking and driving, the punishment may result, in the worst cases, in sentences of ninety (90) days or more of real jail time.
In the case of a felony probation, the client faces the possible revocation of the original probation and a sentence to a number of years in the State Prison.
A Violation of Probation case requires the same diligent and competent defense as any new case. I have handled hundreds of probation violation matters with excellent results. My goal, as with a new case, is to reduce or eliminate your exposure to real jail time to the best of my ability.
If you, or a loved one, are facing an alleged Violation of Probation, please call for an appointment so that we may discuss the ways that the violation might be mitigated or even dismissed.