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Probation Violation in New Braunfels, Texas, Representing Clients Accused of Breaking Their Community Supervision Terms

In Texas, probation violations are taken seriously. Even if this is the first time you have violated the terms of your probation, you could be facing the maximum sentence for your charges and potential jail time. Learn how probation violation cases are handled in Texas and see how an attorney may be able to help you.

How Does Probation Work in Texas?

In Texas, probation is referred to as “community supervision,” and it is basically an agreement between the defendant and the court. The defendant promises to comply with the terms of the probation in exchange for leniency. There are two types of probation in the state – deferred adjudication and straight probation. Felony probation is issued for felony cases, and cases involving misdemeanors may lead to misdemeanor probation.

Deferred adjudication is a type of probation in which the court delays the conviction and sentencing of a defendant. If the defendant successfully complies with all the requirements of their probation period, the court may dismiss the charges altogether, and the defendant may avoid a conviction. In contrast, straight probation can be an alternative sentence for a defendant found guilty by the court. It allows the defendant to avoid or reduce jail time for their conviction.

What Is Considered a Probation Violation?

When a defendant goes on community supervision, they will have certain rules to follow. Failure to follow these rules would result in a probation violation. Some of the most common probation violations include failing to obtain permission before leaving the county or the state, not reporting to their probation officer, consuming alcohol or illegal drugs, and committing a new crime.

The judge decides the probation terms of each defendant based on a variety of factors. Those include the nature and severity of the crime, any prior criminal history, the judge’s opinion on whether the defendant should go to jail or not, and whether the defendant poses a risk to the community. Many probation terms prohibit actions that are not illegal per se, such as not staying employed. However, violating those terms would likely lead to harsh consequences and probation revocation.

What Are the Consequences of Violating Probation in Texas?

The consequences of violating community supervision in Texas can vary depending on the type of probation the defendant has received. For defendants serving straight probation, a violation may mean the defendant may be required to serve the rest of their sentence in jail or prison. For instance, a defendant who was convicted to three years in jail but served one year in probation may be ordered to spend the remainder of their sentence behind bars or, in some cases, may be given the maximum sentence and spend all three years incarcerated. The time they already served on probation is not counted towards their jail sentence.

If the defendant was given a deferred adjudication probation, their case may continue and immediately proceed to sentencing. The defendant may be convicted of their original charges and face the maximum sentence for their offenses.

It is also worth mentioning that if the defendant’s probation violation was due to being charged with another crime, the defendant may face charges for their new offense as well as for their original charges. If law enforcement believes the defendant has violated their probation, they will go to court and file a motion to adjudicate probation. If the court agrees with their motion, the court issues an arrest warrant, which allows law enforcement to take the defendant into custody until a probation hearing is scheduled.

How Can a Probation Violation Attorney Help?

If you have been arrested for a probation violation, it is best to reach out to a skilled criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can build a strong argument on your behalf to convince the court that you did not violate the terms of your probation or that there is not enough evidence to prove that you committed a violation. If neither of these are feasible options, your attorney may also be able to negotiate with the court in order to amend the terms of your probation and keep it from being revoked, which would likely allow you to avoid going back to jail.

Seymour & Vaughn represents clients dealing with criminal charges or probation violation charges in New Braunfels, Texas, and surrounding areas. If you need strong legal representation to help you stay out of jail, contact our office at 830-282-8751.