If a criminal accused takes a plea bargain for probation or is sentenced to probation by the presiding justice, the defendant must abide by the probationary conditions. The criminal defendant is required to ‘keep the peace’ and be of good behavior during the period of probation in Rhode Island. There are numerous rules during probation such as in some cases reporting to a probation officer, keeping probation apprised of your address etc. The Providence Superior Court Judge or Magistrate may also impose additional conditions of probation.
This is a period of extreme risk for a criminal defendant in Rhode Island and Providence Plantations!
If a defendant violates the terms and conditions of probation or bail by being arrested for a new crime then the defendant may be incarcerated at the Adult Correction Institution as a violator of probation or bail. After ten days, the accused violator has the right to a hearing on whether or not the violation occurred. An accused and suspected probation violator or bail violator should immediately hire a RI Criminal defense lawyer. If the alleged violator cannot afford a Rhode Island criminal defense attorney, he or she should Contact the RI Office of the Public Defender.
During the course of the Providence probation violation hearing, the prosecutor for the State of Rhode Island must only convince the presiding judge that the accused violated probation by a fair preponderance of the evidence. The prosecution must establish that the suspected probation or bail violator committing a new offense during the probation period. The criminal defendant may also be prosecuted for the new offense as a separate charge from violating the probation.
There is a good chance that if a person is violated for his probation that the probation which was originally not a conviction will now ripen into a conviction.
At the violation hearing, the prosecutor has the leverage and control and usually uses such power to coerce and force a plea bargain. The reason for this is that it is fairly easy to prove a probation violation under the fair preponderance of the evidence standard. The prosecutor can wield the sword of the threat of additional jail time as a result of the alleged violator being found in violation of his probation by a judge.
Even more troubling, is that prosecutors often try to force an alleged probation violator or bail violator to accept a plea on the underlying offense in order to avoid more jail time as a violator. Sadly, people who are innocent of the underlying criminal offense are often strong armed by prosecutors to admit to the underlying offense so they can get out of jail on the probation or bail violation allegations.
A violation of a no contact order or a restraining order is a violation of probation!
A period of time while a defendant is out on bail or is on probation is a time of EXTREME risk for the criminal accused in Rhode Island and Providence Plantations. The criminal defendant must be careful to stay out of trouble and not get arrested again! The alleged criminal in RI needs to be more careful if there is a no contact order (nco), order protection from abuse from The Rhode Island Family Court or another restraining order in effect.
A criminal defendant could also be violated as a result of a technical violation of probation or bail such as failure to do Court ordered drug tests or failure to provide an address to RI Probation.
A Rhode island criminal defendant with a suspended sentence or stayed sentence faces huge potential risks regarding getting jammed up with an alleged probation violation. As a result of a probation violation in Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, an alleged probation violator with a suspended sentence MAY be ordered to serve the remainder of the suspended sentence at the Adult Correctional Institution (ACI).
By way of example, a criminal defendant with a probation sentence may get themselves deeper into trouble when they resume a relationship with their wife or girlfriend despite the fact that a Rhode Island no contact order is in effect. If there is an argument or allegations of domestic assault or abuse or someone sees the two people together, the police may arrest the person and hold him or her in jail as a probation violator. If applicable, the alleged criminal will face new charges for domestic assault or domestic disorderly conduct or violating a no contact order.
Technical Probation Violations in RI
A criminal defendant may also be violated by his or her probation officer for various infractions that may not be criminal acts but that violate the conditions of probation such as not keeping a probation officer apprised of a new residence, leaving the State of Rhode Island without permission, failure to pay court costs or restitution, not reporting as requested to RI Probation, etc. These infractions are typically considered technical violations of probation. When a person is under probation in RI he or she is in a contract with the State of Rhode Island to keep the peace, be of good behavior and comply with the conditions and rules of probation.
Citations and Authority
“Mainstream accounts of community corrections supervision emphasize rehabilitation on the one hand, and surveillance and control on the other. This article, however, examines whether probation supervision is used to reduce the exposure of offenders to crime opportunities. ” Probation Supervision and the Control of Crime Opportunities: An Empirical Assessment, Joel Miller, PhD firstname.lastname@example.org
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