7 Steps of a Misdemeanor Probation Violation Case

 

1.  Bad News from the Probation Officer:

Obviously the first step of a misdemeanor probation violation case is the bad news from the probation officer. You will usually learn that something is coming down the pipeline when you go in for your monthly visit with your probation officer and he or she looks unhappier than usual. You will probably be told that you failed a drug test, or alcohol test, or haven’t been keeping up on your fines or costs of supervision, or that you picked up a new criminal charge. Whatever the news may be, it is bad news. The probation officer will file an affidavit with the prosecutors office, and report to them that in the probation officer’s opinion you have failed at supervised probation. Continue reading

How Long After an Alleged Offense Can The State File Criminal Charges?

Times up

What is a Statute of Limitations?

A Statute of Limitations is a law that limits how long the State has to file a criminal charge. The time period that the Statute runs is usually measured from the day of the commission of the alleged offense to the day criminal charges were filed. In the event that the State fails to charge the crime within the time given by the Statute of Limitations, the State will be forced to dismiss the case. Continue reading

Never speak to the police! My first video blog.

I’ve graduated from just regular blogging to full blown video blogging!  From time to time when I get a chance I’ll try to do more of these legal video blogs.  Check in this week as I answer questions related to speaking to the police when you’ve been accused of a crime, a suspect in a crime, or even a person of interest in a crime.  Spoiler alert. . . my answer is, you really should never speak to the police if you are being accused of a crime, especially without a lawyer present.  Watch the video though because I go through all the reasons why you should  never speak to the police, and how it could really hurt someone’s case who has been accused of a crime.

What happens to a witness (or victim) if they fail to appear for court?

One question I am often asked, but I am reluctant to answer is, what will happen to a witness (or alleged victim) if the witness fails to show up for court?  I am most frequently asked this question by a witness who is the wife or girlfriend of a defendant in a domestic battery or domestic assault case.  I suspect they are asking this because they hope that their absence from court will result in a dismissal of the defendant’s case. Continue reading

Do juries get it wrong?

I am often surprised at how passionate people get about how wrong a jury verdict is when they know very little about the case. We often see great passion from the general public in verdicts like the infamous criminal trials like the O.J. Simpson trial. People will talk for hours about how wrong the jury verdict was, but ultimately tell you very little about the details of the case.

Continue reading

What is a withheld judgment? If I am offered one, should I plead?

As a criminal defense lawyer, I often get asked questions about withheld judgments. Often my client’s primary concern is keeping his or her record clean. Having a criminal record can make it difficult to get a job, get financial aid for college, be accepted into some colleges, etc. The hope is that the case can be resolved in such a way that your record will allow you to have a full and successful future. Can a withheld judgment help you with that? Continue reading