Understanding Arizona Probation Laws
According to the Legal Dictionary, probation means that a sentenced person is released from confinement, but under court supervision. This type of sentence can replace time in prison or it can suspend a prison sentence if a convict demonstrates good behavior consistently, as well as having understood that they broke the social and legal norms through the action that led to their sentencing and are determined to avoid this type of behavior in the future.
According to criminal defense Arizona law, a court can give probation for five out of the six classes of felonies. However, there are certain offenses that are not eligible for this type of sentencing, despite all mitigating circumstances. These are:
- Manslaughter, assault and domestic violence ( as stipulated by Arizona Revised Statutes 13-704)
- Sex crimes against children
- Sale of illegal drugs over a specific amount or in a school zone
- Theft in excess of $100,000
- Committing a new felony while under intensive probation.
Types of Probation in Arizona
An experienced criminal defense Arizona law attorney can explain what type of probation you may expect to receive at the end of the trial. The difference between the three types of probation applicable in Arizona is made by the level of supervision.
In turn, when determining the type of probation, the judge will analyze the offense you committed. Thus, you may receive one of the following:
Type 1: Unsupervised Probation
This is the lightest form of probation. You do not have to meet with a probation officer on a regular basis. However, you must comply with the condition set by the court – for example, not break the law for 2 or 3 years. Should you commit a felony or misdemeanor while under probation, criminal defense Arizona law is clear: you may get time in prison or an extension of the probation period with a higher level of supervision.
Type 2: Supervised Probation
This is the most common form of probation, involving regular meetings with a probation officer. You may also have to accept:
- Visits at your home from the probation officer
- Drug tests
- Counseling classes
- Community service.
Type 3: Intensive Probation
The most severe type of probation involves reporting to the probation officer several times each day. You must also demonstrate with applications and signatures from interviewing staff that you are looking for a job or that you have a job (the pay slip is required as evidence). You may also receive unannounced home visits from the probation officer and have to submit to random drug testing.
Restrictions Imposed by Probation
Your criminal defense Arizona law attorney will warn you that probation, although preferable to term in prison, will dramatically change your life. Some of the restrictions you may have to comply with are:
- Nightly curfews
- Prohibition to contact any family members or friends with a criminal record
- Not being allowed to travel for other than job related purposes
- Restrictions on using computers and the internet
- Restrictions on drinking alcohol or attending venues where alcohol is served
- Monitoring of your financial assets by a probation officer
- Random searches of your home, car, computer and mobile phone.
Hire an Experienced Criminal Defense Arizona Law Attorney!
When you are charged with a misdemeanor or felony, you should retain a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible, especially if you are a first offender. Through careful analysis of the case, the criminal defense Arizona law attorney can fight to obtain the most favorable type of probation for you.
At the same time, the lawyer will explain the conditions of the probation to you and give you tips to help you comply with these conditions and avoid a violation, which may result in a prison term. Call us now and speak with an experienced criminal defense Arizona law attorney about your case!