Probation Violation

Probation Violation Lawyer in Jacksonville

In the state of Florida, when you have been sentenced to probation, there are certain terms and conditions that you must obey. If you disregard these terms, your probation might be revoked. If this is the case with you, reach out to an experienced criminal defense lawyer like Alexander Smith-Johnson.

Florida's Conditions of Probation

Under Florida Statute 948.001(8), probation is court-ordered supervision that requires meetings with a probation officer. When you are sentenced, you must arrange a meeting with that officer. The officer will review your probation terms and outline the entire process. 

 

Depending on the specific case, there are conditions for probation. Some of the most common terms include:

  • Reporting to a probation officer
  • Finding employment 
  • Limiting travel to certain areas
  • Allowing a probation officer to make home visits

 

When you have been sentenced to probation, you must abide by these certain conditions. In some cases, specific activities can be prohibited under your probation.

Florida's Probation Types

There are five types of probation in the state. For many crimes, probation is a viable option for prosecutors. Probation can help to limit overcrowding in jails and allow the defendant to face less severe penalties. These types of probations include:

  • Standard supervised probation: In Florida, this is the most common form of probation. Like all types of probations, the offender must adhere to certain conditions and make regular reports to a probation officer. 
  • Administrative probation: For those less serious crimes, administrative probation is an option. With these cases, the defendant will have to pay a fine, and they are required to stay out of any additional criminal trouble. Meeting with a probation officer is not required, but they may have to attend educational outreach programs.
  • Community control: These types of conditions include ankle monitors, house arrest, and curfews. You must agree to avoid certain places and individuals. 

 

Specific crime-related probation includes:

  • Drug offender probation: A convicted individual must enroll and complete a drug treatment program. Regular drug testing is often another condition of this probation.
  • Sex offender probation: This type of offense carries special probation terms, along with community service. The defendant might also be prohibited from living in a particular area or accessing the internet. 

Types of Violations

You can violate your probation in two ways:

  • Technical: If you have failed to report to your probation officer, it is a technical violation. By violating other terms of your probation, it can also fall under a technical violation.
  • Substantive: Any newly committed crime is considered a substantive violation. 

 

Any violation could lead to a revocation of your probation, and you might have to serve your remaining sentence in jail or prison. 

 

Some of the most common violations include:

  • New criminal arrest
  • Failing a drug test
  • Violating curfew terms
  • Failing with financial obligations
  • Missing an appointment with a probation officer

Violation of Probation

In the state of Florida, many probation violators will have a zero bond set by a judge. In these cases, you need to stay in jail until your hearing. You will want to have a skilled criminal defense attorney to manage your case. These issues must be dealt with urgency.

Probation Violation Hearing

At the hearing, you will appear before a judge. These hearings are different from a civil or criminal trial. Without the proper legal representation, you could have your probation revoked and spend the rest of your sentence in jail or prison. 

 

You will need to enter a plea before the court. Unlike a criminal trial, guilt is not determined “beyond a reasonable doubt.” It only needs to be established with a “preponderance of the evidence.” If you were deemed more likely than not to violate your probation terms, the courts will find you guilty.

Violation of Probation Sentences

The court determines all these sentences. In some cases, you can explain why you have violated the terms of your probation. You might have had a family emergency or forgot about a scheduled appointment. The judge will review evidence to support your claims. 

 

If you have been found not guilty, you will continue to serve out the terms of your probation. There is a chance of serving the original jail term for those found guilty of probation violations. 

 

During these hearings, the judge can:

  • Reinstate your probation
  • Modify the terms of the probation
  • Revoke your probation

Felony Probation Violations in Jacksonville

For those felony probation violations, six points will be added to the criminal scoresheet. A second or third violation could lead to additional six or twelve points added to your record. Along with the added points, any further crimes will face maximum penalties for those offenses. In most cases, that means no possibility of probation and a lengthy prison sentence. 

 

The Anti-Murder Act is another issue with probation violations. If your original offense was listed under the Anti-Murder Act and you violated probation terms, there is a possibility of zero bond for your case. 

Florida Probation Defenses

A professional lawyer can help you navigate through the complicated probation violation process. You can make an argument against these violations. In some cases, it was a mistake by the defendant. Your attorney might contend that the probation was:

  • Violated, but it wasn’t willful or intentional
  • Was not violated

Talk To an Experienced Probation Lawyer

Violating the terms of your probation can lead to some serious consequences. You will want to reach out to a skilled attorney who has experience with these violations. Alexander Smith-Johnson understands the legal process, and he will work hard to help you resolve these legal issues. 

 

With the right help, you could avoid the strictest penalties for your probation violation. These criminal matters will not go away, and you need to consult with someone who can help you. 

 

Alexander Smith-Johnson is ready to take on your case. Make sure to schedule a consultation with the Jacksonville office.

Let Alex help you!

If you have any questions, call or email Alex today for a free case review/consultation.

Call : (904) 779-3646

asmith-johnson@smithandeulo.com 7 days/week 24 hours