How to Handle an Alleged Probation Violation

Probation Violation Court Hearing Document

Probation is a common sentence, especially for a first-time offender who committed a relatively minor offense. A judge may sentence a defendant to probation instead of sending them to jail. If you were sentenced to probation, you must follow the terms of your probation carefully. Failure to do so could result in a new charge of a probation violation.

If you were charged with a probation violation, experienced legal representation is crucial. A lawyer at The Lebedevitch Law Firm, LLC, can analyze your situation, represent you in court, and work to minimize the consequences of an alleged violation.

Based in Fairfield, Connecticut, The Lebedevitch Law Firm represents people charged with violating probation. Attorney Stephen Lebedevitch can protect your rights, advise you on what to say (and not say) to your probation officer to avoid saying something that could be used against you, and build a compelling defense to combat the charges.

What Is a Probation Violation?

Someone charged with a crime may be placed on probation as part of their sentence, or when they are released after having served part of their sentence. Being placed on probation is an opportunity to avoid jail and prove you can abide by the law. But complying with the terms of your probation is not always easy.

If you violate the terms of your probation, you can be charged with a new criminal offense known as a probation violation. If you are found guilty of violating your probation, you face additional penalties and could be sent to jail.

Common Examples of Probation Violation

A person violates probation when they fail to follow one or more of the conditions of probation set by the court. Some terms of probation are standard in most criminal cases. But the judge can tailor the terms of your probation to the unique circumstances of your case and can set nearly any condition as a term of probation.

Some of the most common ways a probation violation can occur include:

  • Missing a court hearing
  • Failing to attend a meeting with your probation officer
  • Failure to complete court-ordered community service
  • Not attending a court-ordered treatment program, such as a substance abuse program, alcohol abuse program, or treatment program for sex offenders
  • Visiting people or places the judge told you to avoid
  • Not paying restitution
  • Traveling out of state without permission from your probation officer
  • Failure to comply with sex offender registration requirements, if you were convicted of a sex crime
  • Violating the terms of a protective order or restraining order
  • Failure to maintain gainful employment
  • Failing a drug or alcohol test
  • Committing another crime

Regardless of your specific circumstances, allegations of a violation should be taken seriously, and you should contact an experienced lawyer immediately.

What Happens When You Violate Probation?

If you are accused of a probation violation in Connecticut, the consequences will depend on the circumstances of the violation. If the violation is relatively minor, such as missing a meeting with your probation officer or a court-ordered counseling session, you may only receive a warning. But additional violations could lead to more serious consequences.

If your violation is more severe, you could be charged with a probation violation, in which case you will be arrested and ordered to appear in court for a violation hearing. During the hearing, the judge will hear evidence to determine whether you violated the terms of your probation.

If you were charged with a probation violation, you must understand that a hearing is very different from a criminal case.

  • Unlike a criminal case, which is decided by a jury, probation violations are heard only by the judge.
  • The burden of proof is lower. In a criminal case, the prosecutor must prove you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. But in a hearing on a probation violation, the state only needs to prove its case by a preponderance of the evidence. This is a much lower standard and means the prosecutor only needs to show it is “more likely than not” that you violated the terms of your probation.

If you are found guilty of violating your probation, the judge can impose various consequences, such as adding time to the period of your probation, imposing new conditions of probation, or revoking your probation and sending you to jail.

How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help

If you were charged with a probation violation, experienced representation is crucial. A lawyer can help you understand the potential penalties you face and represent you in court. When you are facing charges of a violation, you have two basic strategies available: (1) explain why you did not violate the terms of your probation, or (2) admit the probation violation and explain why it occurred and the steps you are taking to prevent a violation from happening again. The Lebedevitch Law Firm can evaluate your circumstances and provide strategic advice on how to handle your alleged probation violation.

Charged with a Probation Violation? Contact The Lebedevitch Law Firm, LLC, Today

A probation violation can have serious consequences. To minimize the consequences of an alleged violation, you need an experienced, dedicated, and tenacious lawyer on your side. The Lebedevitch Law Firm can evaluate your situation, explain your options, and protect your rights. We can offer advice on how to handle the alleged violation with your probation officer and represent you in court to explain why you did not violate the terms of your probation or ask that the judge give you another chance.

To discuss your situation, contact The Lebedevitch Law Firm today to schedule a confidential consultation.

Categories: Probation Violation