The State is Trying To Revoke My Probation–What Can I Do About It?

By Bo Kalabus
www.rosenthalwadas.com;
b.kalabus@rosenthalwadas.com
24-hour Jail Release: 214-402-4364

Probation is technical and expensive. To be successful on probation you have to be organized, disciplined, and have a little bit of luck. People complete their probation obligations every day, but for many the road through probation is hard.

For example, if you plead guilty to a possession of marijuana charge in Collin County Texas and were put on probation in the fall of 2015. The deal you took was 90 days jail probated for 12 months and a $600 fine plus court costs. The terms and conditions of your probation were to take a substance abuse evaluation, complete a drug class, submit to random drug checks, and complete 45 hours of community service.

How the Revocation Process Begins

Fast forward to the summer of 2016 with 3 months to go on probation. You forgot to report to your probation officer in May, and you are also behind on your community service hours and payment of your fine. You meet with your Collin County probation officer in June and the first thing he hits you with is a drug test—which you fail because it was your best friend’s birthday the week before. At this point, the probation officer believes you are no longer a good candidate for probation and files a motion to revoke your probation based on the mistakes you made in May.

Once the motion to revoke is filed, a warrant will be issued for your arrest. You will have to turn yourself in, or you will be arrested for the outstanding warrant, which usually happens at an inconvenient time. If it is a motion to revoke misdemeanor probation, you will be entitled to a bond, so you will have the ability to be bailed out.

What Happens Next?

The next step will be going to court. This process will mirror the court appearances you had with the original case—you will have a first appearance that will allow your lawyer to take a look at the motion to revoke and the State’s punishment recommendation. Yes, get a Collin County criminal lawyer if this is happening in Collin County. A motion to revoke is a tricky process and I highly recommend you get a lawyer on board to represent you considering the State will most certainly take the position that you have already been given a chance and don’t deserve a second one. It will be very difficult for you by yourself to argue otherwise to the prosecutor.

What Happens to Me?

On a typical motion to revoke, you will either be extended on probation, or you will receive a jail sentence and be done with probation. If there are defenses to the allegations of the motion to revoke, the lawyer may be able to get the motion withdrawn. If you do not like the State’s recommendation you can set the motion to revoke for hearing and make the State prove-up the allegations in their motion. Here’s the problem—take the example above—the State need not prove up every allegation in the motion to revoke to win, the State only needs to prove up one allegation to win the motion. If the State can prove you failed to report in May, the State has won the motion to revoke. As you can see, there is very little room to maneuver if your probation is being revoked for legitimate allegations.

After reviewing the facts and negotiating with the State, a lawyer can advise you of your chances of winning the motion to revoke at a hearing. Or perhaps buy you some time to get caught up on the items the State wants to revoke you on to get your probation extended or the get the motion dismissed outright.

A motion to revoke your probation will create a difficult time for you. You should have competent legal counsel review your case to put the most options on your table based on the specific facts of your case.

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