A felony violation of probation (VOP) allegation usually results in a "no bond" warrant. After the arrest on the warrant, the person arrested must wait in jail to see the court to resolve the case. Many individuals want to avoid going into custody altogether after a violation of probation allegation. In certain cases, an experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to assist you in getting the "no bond" warrant withdrawn so that you can avoid going into custody altogether. In other cases, your attorney may be able to appear with you at first appearance court which may be schedule within 8-24 hours of your arrest depending on when you turn yourself in on the warrant. At the first appearance the court may grant you a bond, especially in those cases in which you are not a flight risk, and the allegation of violation of probation is for a technical violation or a new misdemeanor arrest.
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In a recent case, D.B. v. State, 05-cf-018590, Circuit Court in Hillsborough County, a man charged with several felony counts of worthless check contacted our office after he learned that his Hillsborough County probation officer in Tampa had issued a warrant for his arrest for violating probation when he failed to pay restitution as scheduled. "Failure to pay" is considered a technical violation. Certain defenses exist for this type of violation including a showing that the failure to pay was not willful, but instead resulted from economic circumstances beyond the probationer's control. In this case, the man had moved out of state and wanted to avoid going into custody so that he could keep his job and not fall even further behind in his restitution payment. The man worked on commission, and since his recent commissions had decreased dramatically because of the economy, he wanted his probation time period extended to allow him additional time to pay the restitution.
His probation officer told him that he had a "no bond" warrant for his arrest. The probation officer wanted him to return to Florida and turn himself in at the jail. The man knew that even a few days in jail would probably cause him to lose his job.
The man hired the Sammis Law Firm to file a motion to surrender in Hillsborough County, Florida, and scheduled a status hearing on that motion on March 4, 2009. The status hearing was within48 hours of the time the man retained the firm. On that date, the Court withdrew the warrant so that the man could travel back to Florida on March 19, 2009, without any fear of being arrested on the felony "no bond" warrant. The man was ordered to appear at the next court date. On that day, the man appeared and was granted additional time to pay his restitution. The allegation that he willfully violated his probation was dismissed by the Court in the Hillsborough County case. The client was able to avoid going into custody completely which allowed him to keep his job.
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If you believe that you may be arrested on a "no bond" warrant for violation of probation in Hillsborough County, or in one of the surrounding counties of Polk County, Pasco County, or Pinellas County. Call 813-250-0500 to speak with an experienced Tampa criminal defense attorney to discuss your violation of probation case.