Written by Kenneth L. Foote
Violation of Probation Defense Attorneys
Probation Violation/Violation of Probation (VOP)
If you are accused of violating your probation (VOP) in the state of Florida, know that you run the risk of having your probation revoked. A judge will sign a warrant for your arrest. Once you are brought into county jail, you may be kept there without bond. There is no statute of limitations for violating your probation.
If you or a loved one has been arrested for a violation of probation please call 1-877-903-6683 to discuss your case with an experienced violation of probation defense attorney immediately.
If you have already been sentenced to probation in Florida and are charged with a "Violation of Probation" or a VOP, you do not have the same rights as you would if were charged with a completly new and differnt crime. Differences in a violation of probation charges include:
- No statute of limitations; You will be arrested no matter how long it takes,
- No right to a bond while awaiting a violation of probation hearing,
- No right to jury trial in a violation of probation hearing,
- You can be forced to testify against yourself, you do not have a right to remain silent (you can't take the fifth)
- If you deny you violated your probation the State Attorney does not have prove your violation beyond a reasonable doubt, only a preponderance of the evidence.
You can be arrested of violating your probation in the following ways:
- Changing your address without permission,
- Failure to pay court costs or fines,
- Missing a probation meeting,
- Being late to a probation meeting,
- Not completing court-ordered classes, etc
- Commission of another crime
- Willful (intentional) failure to complete any condition of original probation
When you violate your probation, you do not have a right to a trial before a jury, and the burden of proof of your violation is based on a preponderance of evidence. This means that the prosecutor must only prove that you more than likely violated your probation. You can also be called as a witness at your own hearing, you have no fifth amendment protection.
If you are found guilty of violating your probation, more conditions may be added to your probation terms. Your probation period may be lengthened or revoked, and you may even face time in jail or prison.
There are several kinds of probation that are issued by the Florida Department of Corrections:
- Probation requires the offender to obey certain conditions of probation and be in regular contact with probation and parole officers.
- Administrative Probation places the offender on probation but does not require them to be in regular contact with a parole or probation officer.
- Community Control requires the offender to be under supervised custody. The offender's freedom is restricted to a certain type of residential setting and may include surveillance by officers.
- Community Control II 24 hours a day/ 7 days a week supervision by probation officers that may include spending a set amount of time in residential confinement. This may include 24/7 electronic surveillance.
- Sex Offender Probation offender must follow a treatment plan and be under strict supervision by a surveillance officer.
- Community Control-Sex Offender for an offender who committed a sex crime after September 30, 1997 that violated chapter 794 or s. 800.04, s. 827.071, or s. 847.0145. The offender must undergo strict supervision, treatment, and must submit blood samples to the Florida Department Of Law Enforcement.
- Drug Offender Probation offender under goes treatment, random drug testing, and strict supervision.
Defenses to Violating Probation
Defenses to a charge of violating probation may include:
Full compliance with conditions of probation, or
Actual Innocence; Not Guilty,
- Inability to Prove that the violation was WILLFUL and SUBSTANTIAL
(inability to pay fines is generally not considered willful and substantial)
An experienced criminal defense attorney from K.L. Foote can inform you of your rights and represent you at your probation violation hearing. Please call 1-877-903-6683 to discuss your case with an experienced violation of probation defense attorney immediately.
Contact one of our Florida Violation of Probation Defense Attorneys for a FREE consultation.