A Recent MTR Case at Cook & Cook

On the first business day of 2016, criminal defense Attorney, Justin D. Cook, represented a client for a probation violation (motion to revoke probation case). For purposes of this post, we will call the client “Mr. Smith”.  Smith was originally charged with a misdemeanor of driving while intoxicated  (first offense) in San Antonio, Texas, and was thereafter placed on a deferred adjudication probation.

While on probation Smith was ordered to have an ignition interlock device placed on his vehicle.  According to public record, Smith drank alcohol, in violation of the terms of his probation not to drink any alcohol, 24 hours prior to blowing into the ignition interlock device.

 Based on the facts of Smith’s case, it is clear that even 24 hours after drinking, an ignition interlock can still detect alcohol.  The ignition interlock reported a violation to Smith’s probation officer, and the Bexar County probation department issued a warrant for Smith’s arrest.

General Information About Motions to Revoke Probation and What Happens After Probation Violations

Motions to revoke probation generally involve a set of facts similar to those listed above; a person gets on probation, violates the terms of the probation in some way, and the probation department is informed.

The probation officer issues a warrant for the arrest of the person, and they are brought to court.  The Judge then decides whether to revoke a person’s probation and sentence them to jail, or whether to continue the person on probation.

When Smith hired us to handle his MTR, Attorney Cook immediately filed a notice of appearance, which informed the court that Smith was represented by Counsel.  Cook then set up a “walk through” at the Bexar County Court house that enabled Smith to avoid the inconvenience and embarrassment of being arrested and brought to the jail.  Attorney Cook reset the case for 60 days in order to work with Smith and strategize a presentation for the Court as to why it should permit Smith to stay on probation and not go to jail.  Smith carefully followed the strategy and advice of Justin Cook, and as mentioned, both Cook & Cook and Client Smith won the MTR case.  Smith remained out of jail and on probation.

Jail Activity Reports Show the Daily Outcomes of Motion to Revoke Cases

If you are curious about the outcomes of MTR cases in Bexar County, you can easily find the information from the comfort of your own laptop:

MTR san antonio

The Bexar County Jail Activity reports stay up for the most recent 7 days.  When you click on a jail activity log, you will see the following kind of chart:

Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 1.17.04 PMThe chart shows the attorney on the case, the defendant’s name, the type of criminal case, and what happened with the case that day in court.  As you can see from the above chart, two defendant’s were continued on their probation after their probation violation, MTR cases.  Three defendant’s were put on probation as per the terms of their original plea (these three were not facing MTR cases).  One Defendant was sentenced to prison for Arson of a Habitation.  One person was sentenced to jail as a term of their probation.

What is the Law Governing Probation Violations?

Art. 42.12.  of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Governs the law relating to MTR  and probation violation cases.  For your convenience, we have cut and pasted a copy of the most important provisions in Texas relating to probation violation cases.  The most important thing to understand regarding this particular body of law is that Judges have great discretion to decide to take a person off of probation and send them to jail.  The code provides only a few procedural protections:

(b) On violation of a condition of community supervision imposed under Subsection (a), the defendant may be arrested and detained as provided in Section 21. The defendant is entitled to a hearing limited to the determination by the court of whether it proceeds with an adjudication of guilt on the original charge. The court may not proceed with an adjudication of guilt on the original charge if the court finds that the only evidence supporting the alleged violation of a condition of community supervision is the uncorroborated results of a polygraph examination. The determination to proceed with an adjudication of guilt on the original charge is reviewable in the same manner as a revocation hearing conducted under Section 21 in a case in which an adjudication of guilt had not been deferred. After an adjudication of guilt, all proceedings, including assessment of punishment, pronouncement of sentence, granting of community supervision, and defendant’s appeal continue as if the adjudication of guilt had not been deferred. A court assessing punishment after an adjudication of guilt of a defendant charged with a state jail felony may suspend the imposition of the sentence and place the defendant on community supervision or may order the sentence to be executed, regardless of whether the defendant has previously been convicted of a felony.

(c) On expiration of a community supervision period imposed under Subsection (a), if the judge has not proceeded to adjudication of guilt, the judge shall dismiss the proceedings against the defendant and discharge him. The judge may dismiss the proceedings and discharge a defendant, other than a defendant charged with an offense requiring the defendant to register as a sex offender under Chapter 62, prior to the expiration of the term of community supervision if in the judge’s opinion the best interest of society and the defendant will be served. The judge may not dismiss the proceedings and discharge a defendant charged with an offense requiring the defendant to register under Chapter 62. Except as provided by Section 12.42(g), Penal Code, a dismissal and discharge under this section may not be deemed a conviction for the purposes of disqualifications or disabilities imposed by law for conviction of an offense.

Am I Going to Jail if I Violated My Probation?

It depends.  If you became a fugitive for a prolonged time while you were on probation, by failing to report, this leaves you in one of the worst positions to try to argue that the court should keep you on probation as trust between you and the court is lost at that point.

The Worst Things You Can Do To Violate Probation That May Land You In Jail

  • Failing to report
  • not doing any classes, community service of paying fees,
  • picking up new offenses/charges
  • Not turning yourself in and waiting to get arrested after the violation

The Best Things You Can Do While On Probation that Will Help You Win a Probation Case and Stay Out of Jail

  • Have a good relationship with your probation officer (remember that probation officers are writing down all of your personal admissions to even minor violations– realize that the probation officer is not your friend, but is more like a spy/boss)  Have as good a relationship with them as possible as they are the one that decides on issuing a warrant for your arrest in the event of your probation violation;
  • Do your classes, community service and pay your fees early in your probation.  This will help show the court that you take your probation seriously, even if you did have a minor mishap during the case;
  • Have a job, and be an active member of society, so that if you face going back to jail, you can cite to the court great reasons why you should stay out of jail;
  • If your charge was a DWI, attend extra AA meetings, and get proof of the same– show that you are serious about never drinking and driving again.
  • Readily turning yourself in, once you know there is a warrant for your arrest (this helps the court build trust with you so that the Judge knows that if she grants you another chance at probation, you will not disappear).

What Should I Do If I Violated My Probation in Bexar County.

probation violation attorney

You should call Attorney Justin D. Cook, because he can help you.  Justin D. Cook has a decade of experience negotiating probation violation cases.  He is prepared to fight for you. (210) 271-2800 cookandcooklaw@gmail.com. Or, you can hire us right online for your MTR case.

Cook & Cook offers the following services for your MTR or probation violation case:

  • immediate free telephonic consultation;
  • Justin D. Cook or associate Attorney will go to the court that issued your warrant, and will request a brief hearing where he will ask that a bond be set on your behalf;
  • We will talk to the court about any possibility of you doing a walk through process to avoid the need to go to jail and be processed;
  • Justin D. Cook will attend court for your first appearance, review the allegations against you, and assess your best strategy for staying out of jail/prison;
  • We will issue a strategy to you, for purposes of presenting to the court.
  • We will prepare necessary evidence and questions for you to be presented to the court;
  • Your Attorney will go to court and fight for you to stay on probation.

Call us Today.  We Can Help You. (210) 271-2800.