I am on probation and I work with a friend of my probation officer and any time I have any trouble it seems like their friend knows as soon as it happens and questions me about my situation. This friend of their is not in law enforcement in any way, shape, or form. Is this legal?
Divorce / Separation Lawyer
No, it is not legal.
Probation officers have a statutory duty to keep certain information confidential. This duty is outlined in RSMo 559.125.2
"2. Information and data obtained by a probation or parole officer shall be privileged information and shall not be receivable in any court. Such information shall not be disclosed directly or indirectly to anyone other than the members of a parole board and the judge entitled to receive reports, except the court or the board may in its discretion permit the inspection of the report, or parts of such report, by the defendant, or offender or his attorney, or other person having a proper interest therein."
There was a recent case in the Missouri Western District Court of Appeals in which a probation officer was sued for certain disclosures: http://www1.law.umkc.edu/library/mo_opinions_wd/02152011/Opinion_WD70674.pdf
I would consider contacting your probation officer and his supervisor about these disclosures.
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C. Curran Coulter II, J.D.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
THE COULTER LAW FIRM, LLC
8000 Maryland Ave., Suite 1060
St. Louis, Missouri 63105
Office: (314) 721-1116
Fax: (314) 725-1026
Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Missouri and the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. Responses are based solely on Missouri law unless stated otherwise.
Criminal Defense Attorney
I agree with the prior answer. It is unethical and unprofessional for a probation officer to discuss a case outside the office. It is also an invasion of your privacy.
DUI / DWI Attorney
This is very inappropriate behavior and unprofessional. If the information is medical or psychiatric in nature it could be a serious breech. Remember this individual runs your life so before you do anything contact an attorney.