Early termination of probation, 1st time offender, petty theft, do I need a lawyer? Or do i stand a chance on my own?

Asked over 1 year ago - Salinas, CA

I pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for petty theft, and was put on a 3 year informal probation period in January 20th 2012 when I was 21. I want to file a motion for an Early termination of my probation. My probation will be halfway over in 2 months. Before the misdemeanor I had a clean record. I live alone with my mother, she is ill and unemployed and I have a minimum wage job. I have recently come across a great job opportunity that will be hiring in a few months. I am pretty broke and don't think I can afford a lawyer. What are my odds of success if I file a motion for an early termination myself, with a letter explaining my situation? The officer who arrested me included in his police report that I showed remorse not sure if that is on file or not, but just thought id add that.

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Nicholas Milan Loncar

    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Hire an attorney. It will be worth more than you pay for it and you might find it cheaper than you expected. Contact a few different defense attorneys and get prices. I've seen judges deny these motions even withlive testimony from the probationer's prospective employer stating that he'd only hire him if probation was terminated.

    Also, because early termination of probation and "dismissal"/"expungement" under 1203.4 can be heard at the same time, you might find an attorney who will do both at the same time for a reasonable rate.


    Nicholas M. Loncar, Esq.
    t. 323.803.4352 | f. 323.617.3838
    Sunset Law Building | 1295 W. Sunset Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA | 90026

  2. John M. Kaman


    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Believe me, in Salinas you will need an attorney...

  3. Jasen Bodie Nielsen


    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I definitely suggest that you hire an attorney. While I don't practice in salinas, I've never had a motion for early termination of probation denied. It shouldn't cost you too much money, and if the motion is granted, it will be money well spent. Good luck.

    Jasen Nielsen

  4. Margaret Forbes Mendoza


    Contributor Level 9


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . I agree with the earlier posts...definitely hire an attorney who can handle the probation and expungement issue for you.

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