Probation Violations in Georgia
In Georgia, a common consequence after a conviction of either a misdemeanor or a felony is a term of probation. A separate proceeding may occur if the accused, after conviction of a crime, violates his/her probationary conditions. This separate proceeding is called a probation revocation.
When an accused is sentenced to probation, he/she is usually required to comply with certain conditions in order to successfully complete probation. If these conditions are not strictly complied with, it may result in his/her probation being revoked. Common probationary terms include, but are not limited to:
- Regular reporting to a probation officer
- Maintaining a job while on probation
- No contact orders
- Loss of gun rights
- Drug counseling and treatment
- Community service hours
- Restitution to the victim
- Random alcohol and drug screens
- No new arrests
In Georgia, there are essentially three ways to violate probation:
- Technical Violations: This occurs when the probationer fails to meet a technical condition of his/her probation such as failing to pay restitution to the victim, failing to report to his/her probation officer, or failing to pay fines associated with probation.
- Special Condition Violation: This means that the probationer failed to comply with special conditions, which were imposed by the judge on the probationer, such as failing to comply with random drug screens or drug counseling.
- Substantive Violations: This occurs when the probationer was arrested for committing another criminal offense while on probation. In Georgia, this is usually the most serious violation of probation and could potentially revoke the probationary term and require the probationer to serve the rest of his/her remaining sentence in jail or prison.
When one of these probation violations occurs, the probation officer may file a petition to revoke the term of probation and notify the probationer of his/her intentions to do so. If this occurs, there will be a hearing called a “probation revocation” hearing to determine whether the probation will be revoked and the consequences of that revocation.
Due to the possibility of jail time if a person’s probation is revoked, it is of vital importance to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who understands all possible options when dealing with probation violations. Here, at the Law Offices of W. Scott Smith, our attorneys are skilled and knowledgeable about these proceedings and we advocate tirelessly for our clients and their constitutional rights. Therefore, if you have an active probation warrant or are at risk of your probation being revoked, please call our office today at 404-581-0999 for a free consultation.