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What are my rights while on Probation? What can't/can my Probation Officer do?

Denver, CO |

I am on a 5 yr Probation term for a theft charge, 3 yrs remaining. My PO is mostly nice but I was assigned another PO (for that one day) as my original PO had an emergency to attend to, so I saw another PO. This PO was verbally abusive to me, saying because I am a felon, I should go live in the ghetto. This to me is setting me up for failure. My assigned PO is familiar with my mental issues and always tries to be "gentle" with her words. But this other PO who verbally abused me made me go home and self harm myself. Can she do this? Are they allowed to treat people like this? How can I get off Probation before the time assigned? Can they tell me to move to the ghetto because I do live in a nicer community? What can/can't they do? And what are my rights? PLEASE HELP. Looking to hire.

Whatever attorney can assist me the most, I am very interested in hiring to help me get this situation taken care of ASAP.

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Attorney answers 3

Posted

Your obligations while on probation are outlined in the terms and conditions of probation contract. And that's what it is, a contract. If you don't meet your obligations under the agreement, then you are in violation and hence could be charged with a violation of your probation. I that happens, you could be back in front of a judge facing a resentencing.

Your PO cannot tell up I where to live. However, if there are certain restrictions on your probation, like no contact with children, and you live next door to an elementary school, that could create problems.

I would need a little more information about what you are on probation for, and I would need to see the terms and conditions you signed up on. Honestly, this PO sounds like he's just trying to rattle you. It doesn't sound like you've done anything wrong. Stay focuses on getting yourself the treatment you need and getting yourself better. Your efforts in that arena will carry a lot of weight if your PO decides to violate you.

I also think you have ever right to ask your PO where she is coming up with the idea you cannot live where you do, and where in your probation agreement thesis prohibited. Many people make the mistake that the PO is their friend. They're not. They work for the court and are looking for every reason to throw you off track. They don't want this journey to beady on you.

Lawyer up!

Just because I answered your question, does not create an attorney - client relationship between us unless and until there is a written fee agreement in place formalizing our attorney - client relationship.

Asker

Posted

I am charged for computer fraud; I stole money from an online source. Not thrilled about it obviously, but am working through it. Never been in trouble before, never do drugs or even drink for that matter. Just a mid 20s woman trying to get things better for myself. Luckily that PO who verbally abused me isn't my permanent PO. I had to see her that day because my original PO had a family emergency.. But my mental illnesses are all documented. Probation is after all paying for most of my mental care. My assigned PO knows I am trying. But to have this temp PO pt me down in such a way when my mental illnesses are right there in front of her, she failed to do her job to research me prior to seeing me. She wanted every detail about my crime from me, and again failed to even read about that one too. I told her its right there in front of her, and she declined to even put any effort into looking. She also wanted to know about my past and that is something I never want to discuss as I was abused very badly as a child and the best way for me to cope is to "forget it and move on". How can I if she wants every detail? How does that make me recover, forcing me to relive it? I asked her that I did not want to discuss it, and she raised her voice at me and said that she is a PO and has that right. So my right obviously doesn't exist to her. Also, can my PO keep harassing me to obtain a job even though I am on disability and work from home part time? I have never been late on my restitution but the job placement keeps coming up and its quite annoying. Thanks for all your help! Much appreciated!

Andrew John Contiguglia

Andrew John Contiguglia

Posted

I think it's important that you hire an attorney who can help document and challenge some of this nonsense. I don't like the sound of how this is going for you. But it is important that you educate your PO, which I think is best accomplished by using an attorney. you need to leave a paper trail so if the PO ever does file s revocation you have some evidence to present to the court.

Asker

Posted

I definitely NEED an attorney, no questions asked about that. If I hire you, could you get me off of probation early? I want off because I am tired of the harassment. I am doing all I can but they keep forgetting my mental state is extremely fragile. I read somewhere that I can get on unsupervised probation so I do not have to report or anything. All I have to do is not get in trouble and thats pretty easy for me to not do.

Asker

Posted

I typed that last sentence wrong; I meant to say its extremely easy for me to not get in trouble again. I stole money because we needed it to survive. Now, my boyfriend is making triple what he was when this happened 2 yrs ago and I too am bringing in more income.

Andrew John Contiguglia

Andrew John Contiguglia

Posted

It's never a guarantee that you will get off probation early or have it modified to an "unsupervised" status. Only thing you can do is file a request with the court and hopefully the judge will see things your way. It's very discretionary.

Posted

Courts are required to dictate the terms and conditions of probation - expressly in writing or on the record. If the Court ordered it - and probation enforces it, you must comply. Courts cannot simply defer all judgment and discretion to the probation department. I have have won appeals arguing that exact point - where a Court defers the terms and conditions to probation. It has to come from the Court. I agree with the answer above - get the court file or hire a lawyer to do it and see exactly what the court ordered you to do.

Attorney Michael D. Evans, J.D., M.B.A.
The Evans Criminal Defense Law Firm
www.criminaldefenselawyerincolorado.com
https://plus.google.com/106918441028276008767/p...
303-221-3634

THE INFORMATION ABOVE IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE AS WE HAVE NOT ENGAGED IN AN ATTORNEY CLIENT RELATIONSHIP. IT IS MERELY THE OPINIONS EXPRESSED BY A LICENSED ATTORNEY IN THE STATE OF COLORADO BASED UPON EXTREMELY LIMITED INFORMATION, AND SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON WITHOUT FORMALLY ENGAGING A LAWYER WHO CAN FULLY INVESTIGATE AND RESEARCH THE ISSUES.

Asker

Posted

There honestly wasn't much said about my obligations and restrictions. It was computer theft/fraud; I stole a bunch of money from an online source. (see my other responses to the other attorneys). The only thing that had me worried was that I could not live with my co-dependent, but he was found innocent as he did not have anything to do with it, but I live with him and he is my boyfriend. It's never came up either about us living together.. but that was the only thing I read I was worried about. Thank you very kindly for your help!

Posted

In addition to what the other two lawyers have stated, you may want to discuss with your permanent probation officer the specifics regarding the temporary probation officer. Also, you should probably ask your permanent probation officer to document the mental issues that you have so that if you get transferred to another P.O. they will see the other P.O.'s notes. Otherwise, a P.O. is not permitted to harass you, nor can they dictate conditions that are not set forth in your Conditions of Probation document that you should have received at your sentencing.

Responses to questions on AVVO does not create an attorney/client relationship. Colorado requires that the Client and Attorney enter into a written legal fee arrangement

Asker

Posted

Exactly my thoughts as well. (please read my other responses to the other attorneys). My boyfriend of 5 yrs pays for the rent. I am just on the lease. I have never been late with my restitution or anything so wonder why they keep bringing this up. Yes, our rent is high, BUT my boyfriend is the main income source and pays for it 100%, as I am on disability and work part time from home, so don't make much. Thank you kindly for your assistance!

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