Los Angeles Probation Violation Attorney
When you’re convicted of a crime in California, you may be sentenced to probation for a specified length of time. Probation is conditional, supervised release that may be ordered instead of or along with incarceration. During this period, any failure to adhere to the court’s terms is a violation of probation (VOP). You can be taken back into custody and face additional penalties for a VOP. If you’re accused of violating the terms of your probationary period, you need quality legal help immediately. In Southern California, call a Los Angeles probation violation attorney with the Miranda Rights Law Firm as quickly as possible. While there is never a guarantee in any legal procedure, Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer Douglas Miranda will use every available legal tool to help you keep your freedom.
MISDEMEANOR VS. FELONY PROBATION
When you are convicted of a misdemeanor, you may be sentenced to misdemeanor probation. This probation may last for up to five years, but you usually do not have to report to a probation officer for misdemeanor probation. You will, however, have to appear in court periodically for progress reports with the judge.
Felony probation is much more serious than misdemeanor probation. You are assigned to a probation officer during felony probation and will have to meet with him at least once a month. During these check-ins, the officer will make sure that you are complying with all conditions of probation. The officer may administer drug tests or call your employer to ensure that you are still working.
WE FIGHT TO KEEP YOU FREE
If you are sentenced to “summary” probation in California, you simply need to complete the terms of your sentence and avoid additional legal trouble. If you are sentenced to “formal” probation, you must report monthly to a probation officer along with satisfying all probationary period requirements.
Every probation comes with certain conditions attached to it. Some of the most common conditions that can be linked to your probation include:
- Paying a restitution fine;
- Requiring you to work on public construction projects;
- Requiring you to remain employed throughout the duration of your probation;
- Requiring you to stay off of drugs and alcohol;
- Requiring you to wear an electronic monitoring device, although this is usually only required during sex crime cases;
- Individual or group therapy sessions;
- Requiring that you do not violate any other laws during the probation period;
- Search conditions which give law enforcement the permission to search your premises at any time without the need for a search warrant; and
- Requiring you to complete a specific number of community service hours.
This is not an exhaustive list of all of the conditions that you may have to meet during your probation. If you violate any of the conditions of your probation, you may face serious consequences that not even the most experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney can help you avoid. For this reason, it’s important that you speak with your defense lawyer or probation officer so that you understand what’s expected of you and what can lead to trouble. Some of the most common probation violations include but are not limited to:
- failing to pay restitution as ordered;
- failing to appear in court;
- failing to keep appointments with your probation officer;
- failing to attend or complete court-ordered rehabilitation or community service;
- failing to stay away from certain persons;
- possessing illegal drugs, firearms, deadly weapons;
- being charged with a new crime; or
- driving a motor vehicle with any blood alcohol content whatsoever.
If you have been accused of violating the terms of your probation, don’t wait a second longer to contact an experienced Los Angeles probation violation defense attorney for legal advice on your unique situation and in-court representation.
PROBATION VIOLATION HEARINGS
If you are found in violation of your felony or misdemeanor probation, you will have to attend a probation violation hearing before a judge. At this hearing, the defendant has certain rights that he may exercise, including:
- The right to representation by a criminal defense attorney;
- The right to testify on your own behalf;
- The right to see the evidence that is being used against you;
- The right to bring to light any extenuating circumstances that could have caused or contributed to the violation;
- The right to subpoena witnesses that will prove you were not in violation of probation, and the right to call these witnesses to the stand.
Based on these rights, you may think that a probation violation hearing sounds a lot like a criminal trial, however there is one major difference. There is no jury during a VOP hearing, so your fate will be decided solely by the judge who is assigned to the case. Another difference is the prosecutor does not have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you violated probation. During a probation violation hearing, the prosecution only has to prove that there is a preponderance of evidence, meaning it is more likely than not that you did violate probation.
Ultimately, the judge will make a decision whether to reinstate your probation with the same terms that applied previously, reinstate your probation but change the terms, or revoke your probation entirely and send you to jail for violating it. The judge may consider a number of factors when determining how to sentence you. These factors could include your criminal record, how long into your probation sentence you were at the time of the violation, the seriousness of the violation that you committed and recommendations made by your probation officer.
WE WILL BE YOUR ADVOCATE
Penalties for violating probation depend on the nature of the violation and the seriousness of the original crime. If the violation is minor, you’ll probably be granted another chance on the same terms. If the violation is serious, you could be taken into custody or scheduled for a formal VOP hearing where a prosecutor must prove that you violated your probation. Make sure that an experienced Los Angeles probation violation lawyer is your advocate in any upcoming court hearing. If you’ve been accused of this or another offense, Los Angeles criminal defense attorney Douglas Miranda will outline your legal options and work to develop the most effective possible defense strategy for your case.
At the Miranda Rights Law Firm, we put our experience to work for you. To schedule a free consultation, contact our Los Angeles probation violation attorneys today. Send an email, or call 213-255-3569. Se habla español.