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What You Need to Know About Probation

Posted on in Criminal Defense

probation, probation violations, Skokie criminal defense attorneySometimes, instead of being sent to jail after a criminal conviction, you may be sentenced to probation. As part of the sentence, you are given certain conditions. If your probation officer determines that you violated your probation, you can be arrested and sent back to court.

Types of Violations

The conditions of probation vary for different crimes and the circumstances of your individual case and criminal history. Some typical examples of probation conditions include:

  • Do not commit new crimes;
  • Report to your probation officer on a regular schedule;
  • Take and pass drug tests;
  • Make payments of fines and restitution;
  • Do not leave the state without prior approval;
  • Do not have any contact with the victim of the crime of which you were convicted; and
  • Get and hold a job.

The Standard of Proof

During a criminal trial the prosecution has to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. But, when you have a probation hearing, the probation officer or the prosecution only has to prove that it is more likely than not that you violated your probation. It is a much lower standard of proof. You also do not have the right to a jury trial for a such a violation.

Possible Consequences

There are several different consequences for probation violations. If your probation officer feels the infraction was minor, and you are otherwise making good progress, you may be given a warning.

If you have several violations, or the violations are more serious, the officer can ask the court for a sanction. This could be anything from a short stint in jail to extending the length of your probation.

For repeated violations or severe violations the judge could revoke your probation and sentence you to a full jail term.

Your Rights

You do have the right to be represented by a lawyer at probation violation hearings. Having a lawyer improves your chances of not getting your probation revoked.

You also have the right to call witnesses and present evidence. In some cases you may be able to prove that did not violate the terms of your sentence.

If you have been charged with a probation violation, you need to speak with a tough and experienced Skokie criminal defense lawyer. Do not talk to anyone until you have met with a lawyer. Call 847-239-4703 today to schedule a consultation. You deserve representation from an attorney who is ready to fight to protect your rights.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=073000050K5-6-3

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