If you are found guilty of a crime, the court may decide to sentence you to probation rather than jail time. While probation is generally the better option, it is no walk in the park. If you fail to abide by the terms of your probation, you may face serious consequences.
How will a violation be determined?
If you have been sentenced to probation, you will likely be assigned a probation officer to check in on you periodically to make sure you are adhering to the terms of your probation and obeying all federal and state laws.
Under Indiana law, if you violate your probation during the probationary period, the probation department or prosecution may file a petition to revoke your probation before 45 days have lapsed from the day the violation was discovered and up to one year after probation is terminated.
Common probation violations include:
- Ingesting drugs or alcohol and/or failing a randomly administered drug/alcohol test.
- Failing to attend treatment programs or counseling sessions.
- Failing to attend meetings with probation officer.
- Committing a crime, particularly the same crime you were arrested for.
- Failing to pay required fines.
- Failing to complete community service.
What happens if I violate my probation?
Once your violation has been reported, you will be required to attend a probation violation hearing, where a judge will decide what happens next.
During the proceedings, the prosecution will have to prove you violation by a preponderance of the evidence. Your attorney will be allowed to challenge the violation by presenting evidence and cross-examining witnesses, much like a real trial.
At the end of the trial, typically, one of three things will happen:
- The judge will revoke your probation and send you to jail to serve the time remaining on your sentence.
- The judge will extend your probation.
- The judge will dismiss the probation violation.
Probation violations are taken seriously in Indiana. Those who are accused of a probation violation can speak to a legal professional to learn more about how to defend their rights.