Probation Violations

It’s easy to violate the terms of probation. I am fairly confident it happens quite often. However, probationers don’t always get caught. When they do and are facing a probation violation hearing, the skills of an experienced local defense attorney can be crucial to diffuse a potentially difficult legal situation.

Criminal Charge in Kansas City? Call Attorney, Mark Hagen at (913) 871-1007.
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Having walked the halls of the Johnson County courthouse and others in the surrounding area for years, I know how stressful a probation violation hearing can be and I also know what you are up against.

When you were granted probation the judge saw you as a “good risk” to be supervised. This simply means he thought you would succeed on probation. When you return to court for violating the terms of your probation, you have proven the judge wrong and now run the risk of serving your entire sentence. The risks to your freedom can be significant, and the chance of facing jail time can be significant.

How does probation work?

Being on probation does not mean you were not sentenced to a prison term. Typically you are convicted, sentenced to imprisonment, and then that sentence is suspended, or placed on hold. While the sentence is in suspension, it is your responsibility to successfully complete a term of probation including all of the rules that go with it.

If you are successful with your probation, the sentence is over and you are free to move on with your life. If, however, you are found to be in violation of your probation the judge has the option to activate your sentence or take it off of suspension.

This means you could go to jail or even prison for several years if you are found to be in violation of your probation.

How did I Violate Probation?

There are many conditions of probation that are standard in Kansas. You may have also been ordered some “special” conditions, or those that are specific to your case. Some common probationary rules include:

  • Submit to random drug/alcohol screenings
  • Avoid further arrests
  • Complete community service hours
  • Report any changes in address to your probation officer
  • Meet with your probation officer at predetermined times
  • Pay supervision fees and/or restitution
  • Make a reasonable effort to get and maintain employment
  • Remain in Kansas unless approved for travel from your supervising officer

While violation any of these is against the law, probation officers exercise discretion in which violations to take before the court.

There is a chance your probation will become tougher after a violation. Officers can apply stricter sanctions or the judge may actually order them. Sometimes jail time can even be a condition of probation as well

One of the most common violations is testing positive for drugs or being arrested again. If you are facing a violation hearing for either of these things or for any other condition of probation, I can likely help.

One benefit of having a local attorney is that I know the local judges. I know how they feel about probation violations and can sometimes negotiate a reasonable compromise. We may be able to find alternative sanctions for the probation officer to apply if it appears you will be found guilty of the violation.

As your attorney, it would be my job to ensure you are treated fairly and get the most positive results possible when you go before the court. I will fight tirelessly to keep you out of jail and help you maintain your positive probation status.