This our third post on serving Arkansas probation. Our last post discussed ways is in which people commonly violate probation, including violating a protective order, failing to show up to classes or testing dirty. When you face a violation of your probation then your lawyer can argue to the Court that you be afforded an opportunity to reinstate. Usually this will involve additional terms and conditions on top of the conditions you already face. You may be required to complete classes, attend meetings, or to perform community service or serve additional jail time. There will be a consequence for the violation.
It is very important to realize that receiving probation instead of prison time means you have been given a second chance. Judges are unlikely to give you third and fourth chances. Take probation seriously and work hard at improving yourself and you will have the best chance to get your PO and the judge on your side if you have any hiccups.
It is helpful if you are facing revocation proceedings if you provide your lawyer with as much information as possible about your positive progress on probation. As we mentioned in our post on common probation violations then it is good practice to keep materials together demonstrating anything good you have accomplished while on probation. If you are in school, working, or volunteering then keep proof together. If you have completed any of the terms of your probation such as community service, classes, negative drug tests or payments on fines then keep proof together. Any diligence you show will improve your chances both of succeeding and of arguing for reinstatement in the event you have a slip-up.
Keep in mind that the judge can consider not only that you transgressed in whatever way is alleged, but also the progress you have made. This is why it is so important that you actively take steps to improve your position while on probation. Everyone makes mistakes and you will be afforded more understanding if you demonstrate how hard you are trying.
Judges have broad discretion when deciding whether to modify, extend, or terminate probation. Keep in mind that probation is in lieu of a prison sentence, so a judge may also consider sentencing you to a prison term upon violation of your probation. If your lawyer is able to convince a judge that you deserve another chance at probation there will still be a consequence for the violation.
Consequences of violating probation range from very small, such as additional community service hours or self-help meetings, to the very large such as additional jail time, residential rehab or prison. This is why it’s very important to consult with an experienced Little Rock criminal defense lawyer who can help.
Arkansas Probationers Can Defend Themselves At Revocation Hearings. We also handle matters in Fort Smith, Fayetteville, Springdale, Jonesboro, North Little Rock, Conway, Rogers, Pine Bluff, and throughout the rest of Arkansas.