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Probation Revocation

Probation revocation proceedings occur due to a probationer allegedly violating one, or more, of the conditions of probation.  The consequences of probation revocation proceedings can be severe, including the extension of the probation period and the court revoking probation and sentencing the defendant to a term of imprisonment.  Additionally, many probationers are placed on probation after receiving a Suspended Imposition of Sentence (SIS) in the underlying criminal matter.

Many defendants view an SIS favorably because it does not result in a conviction on the defendant’s record, but this is only true if the defendant successfully completes his probation.  If, however, the defendant’s probation is revoked, then the sentence will be imposed, and the defendant’s record will show a conviction.  Such a conviction can result in the loss of employment, an inability to obtain a loan, and may negatively impact a vast array of family-law matters.  Contact an attorney at the Zolman Law Firm in St. Louis today to ensure that you attain the best result in your probation revocation matter.

Two Types of Probation

In Missouri, the two primary types of probation are court-supervised probation and probation that is supervised by the Missouri Division of Probation and Parole[1] (MDPP).  Court-supervised probation, more commonly referred to as “bench probation”, is probation that is merely supervised by the court.  In court-supervised probation cases, a judge orders that the defendant complete a period of probation, and the judge imposes certain conditions of probation.

Examples of these probation conditions may include prohibiting the probationer from having contact with victims, incurring any additional criminal charges, and entering an establishment that sells primarily alcohol.  Court-supervised probation is a more passive form of probation in that, unlike MDPP probation, there is not a person actively supervising the probationer during the probation period. 

Probation that is supervised by the MDPP will entail many of the same probation conditions as court-supervised probation, however there will also be additional conditions related to the way that the probation is supervised.  Probationers whose probation is supervised by the MDPP will be assigned a probation officer that is responsible for supervising and administering the probation.  Whereas the conditions of probation in a court-supervised probation case are imposed solely by the court, in MDPP probation cases, additional probation conditions may be imposed by the probation officer.

While some of these additional conditions may include requirements to maintain employment, submit to drug testing, and utilize alcohol-monitoring equipment, MDPP probationers may also be required to periodically report to a probation officer. 

This probation officer monitors the probationer’s progress, administers drug tests, and, most importantly, reports any violations of the conditions of probation to the court.  This is the biggest difference between court-supervised probation and MDPP probation; with MDPP probation, there is a person who is responsible for actively monitoring the probation and reporting any violations to the court.

Probation Revocation Proceedings

Whether a probationer is ordered to complete court-supervised or MDPP-supervised probation, any violation of the probation conditions may result in a probation revocation proceeding.  Typically, court-supervised probation revocation proceedings are initiated due to the probationer coming into contact with law enforcement and incurring an additional criminal charge.

In MDPP-supervised cases, contact with law enforcement will also likely trigger a revocation proceeding, but the probation officer can also initiate a revocation proceeding by reporting alleged probation violations to the court.  Probationers are entitled to a hearing before a judge, usually the judge that presided over the underlying criminal matter, to determine the veracity of any alleged violations and the appropriate punishment for said violations.  Probation revocation proceedings may result in anything from the mere continuation of the probation to the revocation of probation and the probationer being sentenced to a term of imprisonment.

[1] http://doc.mo.gov/PP/