Understanding Probation Violations: Causes, Consequences, and Strategies
In the realm of criminal justice, probation offers individuals the opportunity to reintegrate into society while under supervised conditions. However, probation comes with strict obligations and responsibilities, and any failure to comply with the terms can have serious consequences. The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer is dedicated to helping you understand your responsibilities and legal rights.
What is a Probation Violation?
Probation takes place after the resolution of your criminal charges wherein an individual is monitored and supervised for a period of time where they must operate in good behavior, comply with sentencing requirements, and refrain from any criminal activity. This applies to misdemeanors and gross misdemeanors. An offender’s probation officer will typically be the person enforcing the restrictions that the court has put in place in order to promote good behavior and allow the offender to get readjusted to society.
These restrictions usually look like drug tests, regular check-ins with your probation officer, counseling, treatment, fines, paying restitution, and agreeing to abstain from any criminal activity during the time of your probation. The restrictions enforced typically correspond with the associated crime to better help an offender establish good habits and prove they are able to take necessary steps to avoid reoffending. Failure to follow through on the restrictions placed during your probation will result in a probation violation which may lead to significant consequences.
What are the possible penalties for violating probation?
If you are found to have violated your probation there could be a number of penalties you may face. The restrictions around your probation may become stricter by having even more restrictions imposed, your probationary period may be prolonged, or it may even be revoked. Having your probation revoked means that you will be sent back to jail to finish a part of or the entire remainder of the original sentencing.
If your probation officer thinks or has reason to believe that you have violated your probationary restrictions, they will file a report and a hearing will be scheduled. The evidence needed to prove a probation violation has a lower standard as opposed to criminal proceedings, and needs to only prove that the violation was more likely than not to have occurred. Having an experienced attorney on your side to review your case and build a strong defense for you will be important in order to protect your freedom.
What can I do in the meantime?
Whether or not you are in a probation violation proceeding, it is of the utmost importance to understand the restrictions of your probation. Knowing your restrictions will help you avoid this situation altogether, and keep you out of further trouble if you are currently in a probation violation proceeding. Sticking to your guidelines, cooperating with your probation officer, and complying with your sentencing requirements are all good general positions to adopt while on probation.
Overall, probation violations are serious matters that require the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney. If you have been accused of a probation violation in Washington, contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to protect your rights and mitigate the consequences of a violation. Fighting probation violations requires highly skilled and experienced attorneys as the arguments tend to be highly technical, and the probation officers don’t have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer has highly experienced and knowledgeable attorneys that will fight for you and work for the best possible outcome.
Call the Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer at (360) 334-6277 today to schedule a free consultation and see how we can help you and your case.