Adult probation became community supervision when the 71st Texas Legislature changed the term in 2003, but many people still refer to the process by its former name. Generally, community supervision is a preferable alternative to jail or prison sentences after being convicted of criminal offenses, but some people are placed on probation even after serving jail or prison sentences.
A person can be placed on probation for up to two years if he or she is charged with a misdemeanor, but probation can last up to 10 years for felony convictions. Any individual who receives community supervision must obey several different requirements and fulfill certain goals, and any failure to satisfy certain standards or any violation of the probation agreement, will result in that person’s community supervision being revoked.
Lawyer for Violations of Probation in Brownsville, TX
Were you recently arrested anywhere in the Rio Grande Valley area for allegedly violating your community supervision? You will want to quickly contact The Gracia Law Firm, P.C. for help achieving the most favorable outcome to your case.
Jonathan Gracia is an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Brownsville who defends clients in Willacy County, Hidalgo County, and Cameron County.
Call 956-504-2211 to receive a free initial consultation that will allow our attorney to review your case and discuss all of your legal options.
Overview of Probation Violations in Cameron County
- When does a person violate his or her community supervision?
- What happens to people who violate their probation?
- Where can I find more information about violation of probation in Brownsville?
Under Texas Code of Criminal Procedure § 42A.301, the judge of the court having jurisdiction of a criminal case determines the conditions of community supervision and can impose any reasonable condition that is designed to protect or restore the community, protect or restore the victim, or punish, rehabilitate, or reform the alleged offender.
Common conditions of probation include, but are not limited to:
- commit no offense against the laws of this State or of any other state or of the United States;
- avoid injurious or vicious habits;
- avoid persons or places of disreputable or harmful character, including any person, other than a family member of the alleged offender, who is an active member of a criminal street gang;
- report to the supervision officer as directed by the judge or supervision officer and obey all rules and regulations of the community supervision and corrections department;
- permit the supervision officer to visit the alleged offender at the alleged offender’s home or elsewhere;
- work faithfully at suitable employment to the extent possible;
- remain within a specified place;
- pay in one or more amounts the alleged offender’s fine, if one is assessed, and all court costs, regardless of whether a fine is assessed;
- support the alleged offender’s dependents;
- participate, for a period specified by the judge, in any community-based program, including a community service project under Article 42A.304;
- reimburse the county in which the prosecution was instituted as follows: if counsel was appointed, an amount of compensation paid to appointed counsel for defending the alleged offender in the case; or if the alleged offender was represented by a public defender’s office, an amount that would have been paid to an appointed attorney had the county not had a public defender’s office;
- if under custodial supervision in a community corrections facility: remain under that supervision, obey all rules and regulations of the facility, and pay a percentage of the alleged offender’s income to the facility for room and board and the alleged offender’s dependents for their support during the period of custodial supervision;
- submit to testing for alcohol or controlled substances;
- attend counseling sessions for substance abusers or participate in substance abuse treatment services in a program or facility approved or licensed by the Department of State Health Services;
- with the consent of the victim of a misdemeanor offense or of any offense under Title 7, Penal Code, participate in victim-alleged offender mediation;
- submit to electronic monitoring;
- reimburse the compensation to victims of crime fund for any amounts paid from that fund to or on behalf of a victim, as defined by Article 56.32, of the offense or if no reimbursement is required, make one payment to the compensation to victims of crime fund in an amount not to exceed $50 if the offense is a misdemeanor or not to exceed $100 if the offense is a felony;
- reimburse a law enforcement agency for the analysis, storage, or disposal of raw materials, controlled substances, chemical precursors, drug paraphernalia, or other materials seized in connection with the offense;
- pay all or part of the reasonable and necessary costs incurred by the victim for psychological counseling made necessary by the offense or for counseling and education relating to acquired immune deficiency syndrome or human immunodeficiency virus made necessary by the offense;
- make one payment in an amount not to exceed $50 to a crime stoppers organization, as defined by Section 414.001, Government Code, and as certified by the Texas Crime Stoppers Council;
- submit a DNA sample to the Department of Public Safety under Subchapter G, Chapter 411, Government Code, for the purpose of creating a DNA record of the alleged offender;
- in any manner required by the judge, provide in the county in which the offense was committed public notice of the offense for which the alleged offender was placed on community supervision; and
- reimburse the county in which the prosecution was instituted for compensation paid to any interpreter in the case.
Probation violations may be categorized as technical or substantive. A technical violation is usually a person’s failure to fulfill some required probation obligation, such as meeting with a probation officer or paying a fine. Committing a new criminal offense is considered a substantive violation.
Certain violations of community supervision result in probation officers simply issuing warnings. In other cases, probation officers can seek warrants for the arrests of alleged offenders. They can also ask the judge to add more conditions to or revoke the community supervision.
While a person accused of violating his or her probation is entitled to a hearing, violation of community supervision hearings do not operate in the same manner as criminal trials. There is no jury for a probation violation hearing, as the judge who imposed the original sentence is the only person who will hear the case and render a decision.
Additionally, the burden of proof on the State in these cases is a preponderance of the evidence—a lower criminal standard than “beyond a reasonable doubt.” A lower standard means that a prosecutor only needs to prove that an alleged offender “more likely than not” committed the alleged violation as opposed to beyond a reasonable doubt, which is the highest possible burden of proof.
The court will generally do one of three things when a judge issues his or her decision in probation violation cases:
- Reinstate Community Supervision — Alleged offender continues to fulfill terms of probation originally imposed without new sanctions;
- Modify Community Supervision — Original conditions are changed or new conditions are added—such as lengthening the term of community supervision, extra community service, or additional drug or alcohol testing—to an alleged offender’s community supervision; or
- Revoke Community Supervision — Original community supervision is canceled and alleged offender is subject to maximum jail or prison sentence allowable for original underlying criminal offense.
Cameron County Probation — The Community Supervision and Corrections Department (CSCD) supervises individuals sentenced to community supervision by local courts and Cameron County residents who receive community supervision in other counties or states. Use this website to search for offenders sentenced to community supervision. You can also find information about the Cameron County Juvenile Justice Department on this website.
Cameron County Community Supervision and Corrections Department
854 E. Harrison St.
Brownsville, TX 78520
Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) — The TDCJ supervises offenders released from prison on parole or mandatory supervision and provides funding and certain oversight of community supervision. Visit this website to find answers to frequently asked questions, learn more about the divisions and departments of the TDCJ, and access various publications. You can also find a community supervision brochure, fact sheet, and annual reviews.
The Gracia Law Firm, P.C. | Brownsville Probation Violation Defense Lawyer
If you were arrested for violating your community supervision anywhere in South Texas, it will be in your best interest to quickly retain legal counsel. The Gracia Law Firm, P.C. represents individuals in communities all over Cameron County, Willacy County, and Hidalgo County.
Brownsville criminal defense attorney Jonathan Gracia can fight to help you achieve the case result that carries the fewest possible penalties.
You can have our lawyer provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case as soon as you call 956-504-2211 or complete an online contact form to take advantage of a free, confidential consultation.