Waco Probation Violation Lawyers
Challenging Probation Revocations in Lorena & the Baylor University Area
If the state of Texas has filed a motion to adjudicate guilt or a motion to revoke probation in your case, then you need to hire a lawyer to handle your revocation proceeding. At Sutton Milam & Fanning, PLLC, our Waco probation violation attorneys are here to skillfully guide you through every step.
Don't Throw in the Towel & Give Up – It’s Not Over Yet
If your goal is "to be continued" on probation, the most important thing you need to do is to keep abiding by all the terms and conditions of your probation. Keep reporting. Keep doing your community service. Get caught up on all your payments. And of course, no drugs.
The worst thing you can do is adopt the attitude of, "It doesn’t matter, I'm already revoked anyway." Remember, you are not yet revoked. The state has filed a motion and wants you to be revoked, but until the judge says it, you are still on probation. So, make our job easier and handle your business as such.
You're Facing One of Four Possible Outcomes
There are four basic possible outcomes for someone facing a probation violation charge:
- The state may completely withdraw their motion.
- The probationer can insist upon a contested hearing.
- The probationer may be sanctioned and then left on probation.
- Probation may be revoked and the probationer may be sentenced to jail or prison.
It is possible that the state can completely withdraw their motion. In this case, a probationer simply continues his or her probation like a motion was never filed. This is generally the result of either prosecutors becoming convinced that they have filed the motion in error or that they simply will be unable to prove the violation that they have alleged. Or, the violation may be so small that some corrective action on the probationer's part is enough to satisfy the state without having the need to take it in front of the judge.
A probationer can insist upon a contested hearing. This is similar to a trial. There will be witnesses called, but there will be no jury. Whether you are guilty of the original charge is of no consequence. Here, it only matters whether the state can prove to a preponderance of the evidence (a considerably lower burden of proof than beyond a reasonable doubt) whether the probationer violated at least one condition of their probation.
If the probationer prevails at the hearing, the motion will have been defeated and the probationer simply resumes probation as if the motion had never been filed. If the state proves its case and the judge finds that the probationer has indeed committed the alleged violation, then the judge is free to set the punishment as he or she sees fit as long as it falls within the statutory range of punishment.
In other scenarios, pursuant to a plea agreement or an open plea to the judge, the probationer could be sanctioned and then left on probation. The term you will hear us use is "continued on probation." The spectrum of possible sanctions is limited only by the collective imaginations of the defense attorney, the prosecutor, and the probation officer.
Some of the more common sanctions are jail time, increased fines, additional community service hours, counseling, or various classes. In felony cases, Substance Abuse Felony Punishment (SAFP), Intermediate Sanctions Facility (ISF), and TDC Restitution Centers are also possible means by which the judge can dole out some punishment before continuing a defendant on probation. Probationers do receive prison time credit for the lock-down portions of each of these programs.
Finally, your probation may be revoked and you may be sentenced to jail or prison.
Schedule a Consultation with a Waco Probation Violation Attorney
Don’t wait to involve an experienced attorney to protect your interests in probation violation proceedings. You have rights, and they should be preserved to the fullest extent. That is what our team at Sutton Milam & Fanning, PLLC is here for — to help you face the serious consequences of a criminal conviction and alleged violations of probation.
Call (254) 237-5602 today to arrange your consultation.