How strict are probation rules regarding association with felons and violating probation?

Asked almost 5 years ago - Fort Myers, FL

My should-be fiance and I were arrested in association with the same crime, he has a criminal history and I do not so I got off with only probation while he is looking at prison time. When it comes to the no association with criminals rule of probation, to what extent does that go and how strict are the probation officers with that rule? I know I would be in violation if I was around him when he gets released, but does that also mean that Im not allowed to write him, talk to him on the phone, or visit him at the jail? Is it likely, given my situation with my boyfriend that the courts or my probation officer would allow me to be in contact with him if my attourney or I request it as long as Im not around him while Im still on probation?

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Richard Earl Hornsby

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    Answered . Technically, under Florida law, simply associating with someone who has a criminal record is not a probation violation. It is when you associate with people who you know are engaging in criminal activity that it becomes a probation violation.

    As for your situation, the easiest way to avoid the situation is to get court permission to see your fiance.

  2. Laura A Fine

    Contributor Level 11

    Answered . This is a complicated matter - you are right to wonder about this issue.

    There are several bases for analysis:

    1. If you are married (or get married) to the co-defendant, you would have federally protected privacy rights to asociate with a spouse which the state parole/probation offices would have to acknowledge.

    2. If not married, you have fewer rights. Conditions of parole and/or probation must be rationally and reasonably related to the nature of the criminal act. It is reasonable to tell a probationer to have no contact with a co-defendent (even if separately indicted).

    So......step back and look at your situation based on this information. If you have a probation/parole officer, and if you have a good relationship with that person, consider raising this issue with him/.her

    If the person we are talking about is also the parent of your child (though not married to you), it also could create a basis for the right to have contact and you should raise that as well.

    Good luck.

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