The court in Delaware County offers eligible defendants probation as an alternative to jail. A sentence of probation allows defendants to live in society like they were before an arrest, but with limitations. Although probation is perceived as a grace in the criminal justice system, it still comes with a number of responsibilities that makes compliance difficult for some defendants. People are required to pay fines and court costs and attend meetings with their prospective officer, but financial and personal hardships can hinder them from fulfilling these stipulations.
Those who are most impacted by restrictive nature of probation should gain a complete understanding of what's at stake when they commit a violation of probation. The stakes are heightened when the court characterizes this violation as a “direct,” or substantive violation of probation.
Direct Violations in Delaware County
There are two types of violations that you, as a defendant, can potentially commit: technical and direct violations. Technical violations occur when a defendant does not comply with the probationary conditions that have been imposed by the court. Direct violations, however, are much more serious matters.
Defendants who have been accused of defying a court order, or have been accused of breaking a county, state or federal law while on probation are facing a direct violation of probation. Pennsylvania has relatively strict guidelines regarding direct violations. In the state, merely acquiring fresh charges while on probation is enough for a judge to revoke your probation and reinstate your original charges. This time around, the resentencing of your charges will be solely decided by a judge without the presumption of innocence that you had before being placed on probation.
Detainers and Direct Probation Violations
Upon the receipt of an alleged direct violation, a probation officer may see fit to issue a detainer against you. A detainer essentially prohibits defendants from being released from jail after an arrest until the charges have been resolved. With a detainer intact, defendants have been forced to remain in police custody for weeks, and even months while their new charges are being sorted out.
The only way to lift a lodged detainer is to seek the help of a legal professional. An attorney has the authority to file a motion on your behalf that provides reasons as to why you deserve to fight these allegations outside of a jail cell. An attorney can also highlight the weaknesses in the new evidence that will be used against you in your new case.
Delaware County Criminal Defense Attorney
Allegations that involve a direct violation of probation should be taken seriously, as they can compromise your freedom. This is why it's important that you contact an attorney who is dedicated to preserving your rights and effectively defending your case. Skilled attorney Joseph D. Lento has experience successfully representing defendants in Media, PA, who have been in this predicament, and he can provide the same excellent services for you. Contact him today for assistance.