VIOLATION OF PROBATION
Probation or Community Control
If your probation officer or the judge believes you may have violated your probation or community control, you can be arrested. Common violations include positive drug test, failure to complete requirements, missed appointments, and new charges. A judge can issue a warrant or a notice to appear, based on an affidavit alleging that you violated the conditions of your probation or community control. If you are arrested, you may be released with a bail, or you may be held without bail, until your hearing. It is not uncommon to be held without bail in felony VOP cases.
If the violation is not dismissed, then some type of negotiated resolution must be reached, or a violation of probation hearing must be held. If a hearing is held and the prosecutor fails to prove that you willfully and substantially violated your probation or community control, then you will simply be placed back on probation or community control. If the judge finds the prosecutor proved that you violated your probation or community control, then it may be revoked, modified or continued. If it is modified, the judge can add additional requirements which could include incarceration. If it is revoked, the judge must adjudge you guilty of the crime, and can impose any sentence that the court may have originally imposed before placing you on probation or community control.
There are some significant differences between a VOP hearing and a trial on a new charge. The prosecutor's burden of proof is lower for a VOP than it is at a trial. In a VOP hearing, you are not entitled to a jury, it is the judges that decides if the state met its' burden of proof. Hearsay is generally admissible in a VOP hearing as well.
Don't underestimate the significance of an alleged violation because the repercussions can be substantial. If you have been accused of violating your probation or community control, it is important that you contact an experienced and knowledgeable attorney to assist you.