Violation of Probation Attorney
Probation is a condition imposed by the court, in lieu of incarceration, that requires a person to be supervised, comply with certain standard and special conditions. If it is alleged that a willful and substantial violation of those terms occurred, then the probation officer will fill out an affidavit and ask the court to either schedule a court date or issue a warrant for the probationer's arrest.
In many VOP cases, the judge will issue a "no bond" warrant which means that once you surrender on the warrant you will not get out of jail until that condition is changed by the judge. As a result, many people abscond or hide to avoid being taken into custody.
Your attorney has different options to help you fight the case. In certain cases, your attorney can file a motion to surrender in the courtroom so the issue of setting a reasonable bond can be addressed immediately. In other cases, the attorney can file and schedule an emergency bond motion to ask the court to set a reasonable bond shortly after you surrender at the jail.
Contact an experienced criminal defense to find out what options might be available in your case. We represent clients in violation of probation cases, both felony and misdemeanor, in Palm Beach County, Broward County, and Miami-Dade County. Our offices are located in Delray Beach and Miami. Whether you are on probation or community control, we welcome your calls to discuss the case and ways that we can help you fight for the best result.
The VOP Hearing
When you go to court in the VOP case, you will be asked to admit or deny each allegation that you violated probation. The criminal defense attorney that you hire to help you resolve your probation violation case will look at the affidavit of violation, investigate the underlying facts, learn about the facts surrounding the underlying charges, and find defenses and mitigation that exists in the case.
Your attorney can help you determine whether you should admit or deny the allegations. If you deny the allegations that you violated the terms of your probation, then a VOP hearing will be scheduled. The VOP hearing is similar to a trial because the judge will consider evidence and hear the testimony of witnesses. In a VOP hearing, however, the judge will use the lower "preponderance of the evidence" standard to determine whether the violation occurred instead of the higher beyond a reasonable doubt standard that applies at a criminal trial.
If the judge finds a willful and substantial violation then the judge can revoke, modify or continue the probation or community control. If the judge revokes probation, then he can re-sentence the person to any sentence that could have originally been imposed. In most cases, that means the statuary maximum allowed by law. In felony cases, the sentence will be guided by a score sheet which sets a range depending on the person's criminal record, underlying charges, and number of prior violations.
Contact a VOP Attorney for Palm Beach County, FL
If you are arrested for a violation of probation in either a felony or a misdemeanor case in Palm Beach County or a warrant has been issued for your arrest, then contact a criminal defense attorney at McLaughlin Morris, P.A.. Our offices are located in Delray Beach and Miami. We also represent clients on a wide range of probation issues in Broward County and Miami-Dade County, Florida, including violation of probation or community control, and motions for early termination of probation.