Can I Defend my Probation Violation?
So you violated your probation. Now what? Whether it was accidental or not, you now have to face a judge to explain your actions. Chico criminal defense lawyers at Amaya & Associates will fight to help you avoid jail.
What Could Happen?
Probation violations are serious matters. Probation is assigned as a part of the sentencing process. You are required by law to complete every aspect of your probation on time or you can face further punishment. Common probation requirements include refraining from drinking alcohol or doing drugs, completing therapy or service to the community, wearing a GPS location device or not violating any other laws. By violating these requirements set by the court that initially sentenced you, you could face major repercussions. Depending on how the probation violation hearing goes, you might be sentenced to the same probation again, your probation might be altered, or your probation could be revoked, which would result in jail time. These outcomes will differ depending on the severity of your violation and the skill of you and your attorney in presenting your own reformed image. In a probation violation hearing, you have the same rights that you previously had, but the process is a bit different. This time, you do not have a jury deciding your fate but a judge. The prosecution no longer has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty, only that your violation most likely occurred. This puts you in a difficult position, especially if you believe you did not violate your probation. The other main difference is that the judge will accept evidence spoken on hearsay, as long as it can be trusted.
What Prevented You From Completing Probation Requirements?
The first step you should take is to examine why you violated your probation. What was stopping you from abiding by the law? Was it an honest mistake? Maybe you lost your job and could not make restitution payments on time. Maybe you failed a mandatory drug test. You must immediately assess the reasons why the violation occurred and communicate these to your attorney.
Hire an Expert Attorney
The person who is your advocate is your lawyer. You need someone to stand in the gap between you and the judge and effectively communicate your position. Hiring an experienced Chico criminal defense attorney at Amaya & Associates who has dealt with past probation violations will ensure that you get the best representation. If not, you could be stuck with years of jail time, which would further jeopardize your future and chance at returning to your normal lifestyle.
Change Your Lifestyle
If you are involved with addictions or bad relationships that have prompted you to violate your probation, this is your chance to clean up your act once and for all. You want the judge to see a squeaky clean version of your old self. If you haven’t already, sign up and actually go to Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous. Break off your relationship with your significant other if it involves any form of physical or emotional abuse. Find loyal friends who will lead you down a positive path and help you stay committed. All of these changes can be explained to the judge who will definitely take them into consideration when reviewing your probation violation.