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Understanding probation violations

The release of an offender can be subject to conditions or alternatives to incarceration can be implemented. Probation is frequently used as a form of criminal penalty; however, it is also used to reduce the prison population. Depending on the crime a person is charged with or convicted of, specific terms outline what an offender can and cannot do. Violating these terms and conditions could result in a person facing additional criminal penalties. Thus, it is important to understand the situation, whether a violation actually occurred and what defense options are available.

A probation violation occurs when a person breaks the terms or conditions of their probation. There are consequences associated with a probation violation, however, this is dependent on the nature of the violation and how serious it was. Additionally, factors such as prior violations as well as specific circumstances that could lessen or worsen the severity of the matter are taken into consideration. It is possible for a probation violation to result in harsh penalties, including hefty fines, extended probation and even jail time.

There are various ways probation could be violated. This includes not appearing for a scheduled court appearance; not reporting to a probation officer at the set time; not paying the required fines; visiting certain people or places or traveling out of the state without permission; possessing, using or selling illegal substances; or committing other crimes or offenses or getting arrested for another offense.

Those accused of a probation violation have the ability to request a hearing. At a probation hearing, you are able to present evidence. Seeking legal guidance can help ensure you understand the charges and how best to proceed to protect your rights and interests.

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Boyce, Leahy & Francescon, Lawyers
9300 Grant Avenue, Suite 200
Manassas, VA 20110

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