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What are the possible outcomes when a formal felony probation is revoked?

Sacramento, CA |

The original charges included HSC 11379 + 2 counts of HSC 11377 +theft + drug para. Charges were reduced to 2 counts of HSC 11377 vi plea bargin, probation was issued with prop 36 as a condition.
Probation was revoked within a month of sentancing due to mutiple violations.
What are the possible outcomes after the ruling of revoked probation?

There was an ruling to revoke probation, yet there is another hearing scheduled for admit/deny probation violation. Would court records show what the potential next ruling may be?

Attorney Answers 4


If the violations were for drug use/possession violations, the person might be given some additional punishment and continued back on Prop 36 probation. Otherwise, the person will be removed from Prop 36 probation (and the benefits of successful probation) and could be placed on straight probation. If he is going to be revoked altogether, he will be sent to "prison" in county jail, which could be up to the maximum of the charges for which he/she was convicted (or a "split" sentence of some sort).

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Worst case they would be sentenced to the maximum amount hanging over their head. He should have an attorney to assist.
Robert Driessen

Mr. Driessen is a former Deputy DA in Orange County with over 8 years of criminal law experience. Nothing stated on this site shall in anyway be construed as legal advice, or as creating any attorney client relationship. If you would like to hire Mr. Driessen, feel free to contact him at

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There is no standard punishment, set by statute, for example, for one who violates probation. Rather, the judge has wide discretion in how he or she sentences one for violating probation.

The judge will take into account several factors in sentencing. First, the court will consider the seriousness of the violation. The violation may be not submitting to a drug test, or failing the drug test, if drug testing was a condition or probation. The violation may be committing a new crime, failing to appear in court for a court appearance, failing to pay a fine or restitution, or failing to comply with any other court order (such as enrolling in or completing, classes, community service or reporting to probation).

How one presents oneself to the court is also taken into account. If one is arrested on another crime and brought before the judge while in custody, this is not good. It is better if one voluntarily brings oneself to court to resolve the problem, suggesting a sense of responsibility and respect for the judicial process. If the judge issues an arrest warrant or a bench warrant for one failing to comply with the terms of probation, it is good to present oneself in court as soon as possible; voluntarily.

Lastly, the court will take into account one’s criminal history, the recommendations of the probation department and how long one was on probation before the violation took place. The court will pay particular attention to whether the client violated probation in the past or was reinstated on probation in the pending case. The court will often comment that probation is a privilege and not a right, so if the client “abused the trust the court placed on him by affording probation,” the court will most likely not reinstate the client on probation. Instead, the client may face time in custody.

As mentioned above, the court has several options in ruling at a probation violation hearing. The court can revoke violation and sentence the client to jail or prison. When this happens, the client does receive credit toward the length of the sentence based on time previously spent in prison, jail or a residential treatment program.

The court can also reinstate one on probation, but with modified terms that are usually move difficult and meant to punish the client for his or her conduct. For example, probation may be modified to add more community service, Cal-Trans or community labor. The client may also have to serve time in county jail or the period of probation may be lengthened. The court may also order that the client enroll in and complete an additional class.

The court may also reinstate the client on probation under the same terms and conditions. This is the best outcome, obviously. Good luck.

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Although they can revoke your probation without a hearing, as they have already done, they can't "convict" or sentence you for the probation violation until they've given you a hearing. As for what will happen, I agree with my colleagues that it depends on many factors such as the nature of the violation and your demeanor in court. Possible consequences range from reinstatement on Prop 36 to incarceration in county jail for the entire duration of your sentence. Hire a good criminal defense attorney before you go to the hearing. Discuss this question with your lawyer.

The response above is not intended as legal advice. This response does not create an attorney-client relationship. Legal questions can only be fully answered through consultation with an attorney to whom you give full and accurate details. Anything you post here is not confidential and is not protected by the attorney-client relationship. It is highly recommended that you seek advice from a criminal defense attorney licensed in your jurisdiction by setting up a confidential meeting.

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