Probation Violation Sends Man to Prison for Role in 2012 Fatal Shooting

November 15, 2013
by The Law Office of Steven L. Schwartz

Old Prison

Earlier this week, a man who admitted to being involved in a 2012 fatal shooting in Flint Township was sentenced to just under five years in prison for violating his probation agreement. According to a report by MLive.com, back in 2012 during his plea hearing the man cooperated with police and explained his role and the roles of three other men involved in the shooting. This testimony was then used in the trials of the three other men. In turn, the man received a sentence of only four years’ probation for his involvement.

As part of his probation, the man was required to enroll in a substance abuse program. However, after completing only part of the treatment program, the man left the facility against staff recommendations. By failing to complete the term of treatment, the man violated one of the conditions of his probation. He was resentenced last week to a term of imprisonment for four years and nine months.

Probation Violations Are Taken Seriously in Michigan Courts

When a defendant is charged with a serious crime that could carry with it a long prison sentence, he is often relieved to get a sentence consisting only of a few years’ probation. Indeed, that is often the best a defendant can hope for, especially in cases where the State’s evidence is strong.

However, probation is not a get out of jail free card, and in many cases probation agreements are misunderstood by those who are subject to them. All too often probationers get their probation revoked for violating a single term of probation. In some cases, probation can be revoked for what is called a “technical” violation.

Revocation of Probation for Technical Violations

Most probationers understand that if they catch a new charge, their probation will be revoked and they will be sentenced for the original crime and possibly the new crime as well. But what is less understood is that probation may be revoked for a violation of one of the seemingly trivial terms of the agreement, such as:

  • Missing a meeting with a probation officer;
  • Failing a urine test (or failing to show up for one);
  • Associating with people or visiting places they are supposed to avoid; and
  • Failing to pay court-ordered fines or restitution.
Are You in Danger of Getting Your Probation Revoked?

If you are currently on probation and are afraid that you may have violated a term of your probation, you should ensure to enlist the assistance of an experienced Michigan criminal defense attorney immediately. Depending on the specific circumstances of your probation, as well as the facts of the alleged violation, you may be exposed to punishment above and beyond that for the original crime.

At the Law Office of Steven L. Schwartz, we have significant experience defending against alleged probation violations. One of our dedicated and knowledgeable Michigan criminal defense attorneys will be happy to meet with you to discuss the facts of your case and what we can to do decrease the chances of being found in violation of your probation. Click here, or call (248) 930-5019 to schedule an initial consultation with an attorney today.

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