Why in the world would you waive your right to a preliminary hearing? It doesn't matter what the store secuirty guard said, waiving your prelim is a huge mistake! Your PO said you will likely go to jail because they are going to violate you for the retail theft. If you don't have a crminal defense attorney you need to get one ASAP. By waiving your preliminary hearing you have bascially admitted that the commonnwealth has enough evidence to get you past the first stage in the violation process. If you were not represented at the preliminary hearing when you get counsel he or she may advise you to file a habeas motion to try and reverse that waiver. Best of luck.
This information does not create an attorney /client relationship and should not be use or relied upon to make any decision in your case. Only consultation with your own attorney can provide you with the advice you need for your case.
It sounds as if you are already into the process since you waived the preliminary hearing. Hopefully, you were represented at the time and it was done as part of a deal.
Regarding the probation, you said you never violated before - however, you are on probation in two different counties. The PO does have the right to find out more about what was going on before violating you. In reality, it sounds like he was doing you a favor by not taking you in and instead trying to learn more. Often, a detainer would be lodged as soon as the charges are filed and you would never have been released. If you do not have an attorney at this point-get one.
Michael L. Doyle