Frequently when a person is convicted of or pleads guilty to a crime, they are given a sentence that includes a term of probation. Probation can be hard. There are a whole list of things that a person on probation is required to do, some of those include paying fines, passing drug screens, and attending meetings. If you fail a drug screen, don’t pay your fines and costs, get a new criminal charge, or violate any of the terms of your probation, that probation can be violated by your probation officer. If your probation officer violates you, a warrant is issued for your arrest, you are taken into custody and must appear before the judge for a probation violation hearing.
At a probation violation hearing, the state has the burden of proving, by preponderance of the evidence, that you broke a rule of probation. The stakes at this hearing are as high as your underlying sentence. If you are on 8 years probation, you face having your probation revoked and going into custody to serve your 8 years sentence. Similarly, any probation you are on is subject to being revoked at a probation violation hearing.
It is easier than most people think to violate the conditions of your probation. At Byars Law, we attempt to ensure that the mistakes made on probation do not cause you to serve your sentence. At the probation violation hearing, there are many different strategies that a skilled criminal defense attorney can employ to defend you so it is absolutely critical that you engage a criminal defense attorney as soon as you know you are facing a violation of probation, it may keep you out of prison.