Roanoke Probation Violation Attorneys Providing Skilled Representation For Clients In Virginia
A criminal conviction does not always lead to time in jail or prison. In fact, many people who are convicted of crimes are sentenced to probation instead. This allows them to serve their time at home instead of behind bars, which helps them keep their personal and professional lives intact.
But unfortunately, many defendants who are sentenced to probation fail to follow the rules established by the court. If you have been accused of violating the terms of your probation, seek counsel from Roanoke criminal lawyer Seth C. Weston at once.
What Are Some of the Most Common Probation Rules?
If a judge decides to sentence an offender to probation, he establishes certain rules that the offender must follow. Judges often require offenders to check in regularly with their probation officers and take random drug or alcohol tests.
Sometimes, the judge will also order the offender to maintain employment or attend counseling while he is on probation. During probation, offenders are also required to stay in the area and avoid using illegal substances.
Offenders must also stay out of legal trouble while on probation. If you are hit with a new charge while on probation, this is a violation of the court-ordered terms.
These are some of the most common rules seen in criminal law cases involving a probation sentence, but the judge has the authority to set other terms as he sees fit.If the offender fails to comply with any of the terms of the probation, he can face legal consequences for breaking probation rules.
What Happens If You Violate Probation?
If your probation officer believes you have violated probation, he can either issue a warning or report to the violation to the court. If this is your first probation violation and it’s minor, the officer may decide to issue a warning instead of notifying the judge.
However, if the court is notified of the alleged violation, a probation hearing will be scheduled as soon as possible. During this hearing, the judge will determine if a violation did in fact occur. If it did, the judge will decide what penalties you should face for this violation.
What Happens At A Probation Hearing?
It’s important to know what to expect during a hearing. First, the judge will allow both sides to present their cases. The prosecution will present evidence that shows you violated the court-ordered terms of probation, whereas the defense will attempt to downplay the violation or prove that it did not occur at all.
If the judge believes a violation did occur, both sides will discuss the appropriate punishment. The prosecution may argue for serious consequences, whereas the defense mayask the judge to give the defendant a second chance.
The judge will then announce the penalties he has decided to impose on the defendant. Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to violate probation and not go to jail.
Sometimes, the judge will simply extend the duration of the probation or add new terms that the defendant must comply with. But in other cases, the judge may believe it is necessary to have the defendant’s probation revoked.
What Happens When Your Probation is Revoked?
During the probation violation sentencing, the judge may decide to revoke the defendant’s probation. If this happens, the defendant must serve the remainder of his sentence behind bars instead of at home on probation.
Do You Need An Attorney For A Probation Violation Hearing?
It is imperative to have a criminal defense attorney by your side during a probation violating hearing. An attorney can build a case that clearly shows that you did not intend to violate the terms of your probation.
The violation could have been a mistake or a result of circumstances beyond your control. Your attorney can also highlight the many other terms that you have complied with during your probation, and restate your commitment to doing what the court requires. In some cases, it may be possible to argue that you did not violate the terms of your probation at all.
If it’s clear that you violated probation, an attorney can negotiate with the prosecution and judge to help you avoid the most serious consequences that could be imposed. For these reasons, it is better to take an attorney to a probation violation hearing instead of attempting to represent yourself.
Schedule A Free Consultation With Our Award-Winning Roanoke Probation Violation Law Firm Today
Have you been accused of violating your probation? If so, contact the Law Office of Seth C. Weston, PLC as soon as possible to discuss your case.
Seth C. Weston is a knowledgeable criminal law attorney who has represented countless clients in probation of violation hearings. To schedule a free consultation with our team, call 540-342-5608 or fill out the brief form on our website.