Do you need legal assistance with a probation or parole issue in the Irvine, CA area? If so, the Irvine, CA and Orange County probation and parole lawyer at our firm may be able to help you. Our renowned criminal defense attorney has a track record of proven results in the field of criminal law. As a former Special Prosecutor, he understands how the law from all angles of the court room and has been practicing since 1990.
Probation sentences, whether for felonies or misdemeanors, are essentially suspended jail or prison sentences. If, for example, you are convicted of your first DUI, you likely will receive no immediate jail time, even though the charge carries a penalty of 6 months in jail. Instead, you will be placed on probation for 3 years, with conditions attached. If, during the 3 years, you commit a new crime, or fail to abide by other probations terms, the court or DA can file a petition to revoke (violate) your probation. You will then have a court hearing during which the court will decide if there is probable cause to believe you have violated your probation. The standard is very low, so it is easy for you to be found in violation. Back to your DUI. Now that you have violated probation in some way, the court can simply send you off to jail for the 6 months you have had hanging over your head since your arrest for DUI.
Probation violations work the same way for felonies, except for a felony probation violation, the sentence will likely be prison instead of jail. When you violate any kind of probation, the court has the option of giving you the maximum sentence hanging over you, or simply putting you back on probation with no additional consequence. This is why you need a good lawyer for a probation violation. Your lawyer can come up with all kinds of creative ways to get your probation reinstated and to keep you from going to jail.
When you are placed on probation, you may also receive a "suspended” sentence. Let’s say you are convicted of robbery and a judge finds reason to give you probation instead of state prison. When you plead guilty or are found guilty by a jury, the judge may choose to give you 5 years in state prison “suspended” and place you on probation for 3 or 5 years with all of the usual restrictions. If you violate one of the terms, such as not reporting to your probation officer as agreed, a petition will be filed against you, violating your probation. With your suspended sentence, though, the judge AUTOMATICALLY sends you away to prison for the full 5 years. No alternative. For this reason, I rarely advise a client to ask for or accept a suspended sentence. It is very easy to violate one of the 25 odd probation terms and end up paying a huge price.
If you are facing any kind of probation violation, call Mark McDonald. He can greatly minimize the damage.