Probation is a sentencing process that allows the offender to avoid jail or prison altogether. Instead of being confined, the person is allowed to resume to resume their normal activities in the community. However, in exchange for avoiding the jail sentence, the person will be required to abide by several terms and conditions which are determined by a judge.
Probation periods typically last anywhere from 1-5 years. Violation of probation conditions can lead to additional legal consequences. It is worth noting that probation is different from parole, which allows a person to be released from jail after they have served at least a portion of the jail term.
Some common probation conditions are:
Thus, probation violation may occur if the offender avoids, refuses, ignores, or violates such conditions.
A judge has broad discretion to impose penalties for probation violations. State laws may also restrict the sentences. Depending on the severity of the violation and the underlying offense, disobeying probation terms can result in:
Other penalties for probation violations can include:
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the standard of proof is lower in a probation hearing than in a standard criminal trial. In a criminal trial, the prosecution must prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. In a probation violation hearing, the prosecutor only needs to prove the violation according to “preponderance of evidence” standards, which has been interpreted to mean a likelihood of greater than 50 percent.
Last Modified: 05-23-2017 05:44 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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