Have you been found in violation of your probation in Minnesota? You may be wondering what legal penalties you could be facing or if you automatically sent to jail. A probation violation is a serious offense that does carry legal consequences. When a convicted offender does not abide by the terms and conditions of probation then the court feels that they have no respect for the authority of the law. If you have prior convictions, then you must understand the severity of your situation. With probation violation cases, you do not have the right to demand a jury trial and hearsay evidence is admissible in your case- you may even be required to testify against yourself.
If you ignore, refuse or otherwise ignore the stipulations that the court has set out for you, then they will have no sympathy when it comes to sentencing. The law is harsh and unforgiving towards repeat offenders and they will have very little patience and understanding for your situation. That is why it is absolutely vital that you obtain aggressive representation from a Minneapolis criminal defense attorney to protect your rights against the prosecution.
There are two types of probation violations including technical and substantive violations. Technical violations consist of small technicalities such as missing a meeting with your probation officer or failing to get permission before changing addresses. Substantive violations involve committing another crime of some sort and will result in new criminal charge. Even if you are found not guilty for the alleged crime, the court may still use them against you as a violation of probation.
The possible penalties for probation violation can vary depending on various factors including the severity of the violation and whether or not you have prior convictions on your criminal record. The maximum limits for penalties may vary from state to state but the judge has the authority to send you to boot camp, rehabilitation, or any other program or correctional facility that is geared towards correcting your behavior. After the court determines that you have indeed violated the terms of your probation according to a preponderance of the evidence (which is a likelihood of more than 50%), then the court has several options in front of them. During sentencing the judge can decide to extend your probationary period, set a jail sentence, impose additional terms to your probation agreement or decide to revoke your probation altogether. If the judge does decide to revoke your probation, then you will be required to serve out the remainder of your original sentence in prison. The maximum limits for penalties may vary from state to state but the judge has the authority to send you to boot camp, rehabilitation, or any other program or correctional facility that is geared towards correcting your behavior.
It is important to remember that probation is almost like a second chance, it is a time for you to prove yourself to the court so that they will hopefully reduce your sentence. During probation the court is ultimately testing your behavior and abilities to see if you will follow and abide by all the terms and conditions that they set forth. While serving out your probation you may be asked to do the following:
- Answer to a probation officer
- Abide by a curfew
- Remain employed
- Refrain from possession a firearm
- Remain within a certain jurisdiction
- Ban all possession of drugs or alcohol
- Attend treatment classes
- Obey the terms of a protective order
This list is not all inclusive and the above restrictions are not common with every case as each criminal offense is unique.
As the defendant in a probation violation case, you have legal rights that could assist in avoiding possible penalties. If you are facing probation violation charges you should receive legal notice from the court about the claimed violations against you and you will receive a scheduled court date. At the hearing you will be given the opportunity to have your case heard by a neutral judge and you have the right to bring along an attorney to represent you. In court you and your attorney will have the right to present supporting evidence and witness testimonies that will benefit your case and help disprove the evidence against you.
Here at Grostyan & Associates, PLC, I understand how difficult it can be to juggle everything and to fulfill all the terms of your probation while under the court’s supervision. I, Attorney Grostyan, have ample experience defending repeat offenders in probation violation cases and I know how build a solid defense so that the prosecution is not able to establish a preponderance of evidence against you. Contact a Minneapolis criminal attorney from my firm today for the aggressive defense you need against VOP charges.