Fifth Judicial District - Department of Correctional Services

DISTRICT POLICIES

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TITLE: Probation Violation Reports

POLICY

The supervising officer shall investigate, verify, and document all known violations of probation.

The supervising officer shall pursue probation violation reports on all new arrests (officers may use discretion for simple and serious misdemeanor non-assaultive offenses when they are not similar to the original charge), when the offender has absconded, when there is a threat to the safety of the community or an individual, and when there are repeated technical violations of probation conditions that come to the attention of the supervising officer. Violations shall be investigated promptly and thoroughly, reviewed with the supervising officer's supervisor and documented in written reports.

The supervising officer shall consider intermediate sanctions and other alternatives to revocation whenever possible and shall utilize probation revocation only when necessary.

NOTE: Revocation hearing and probable cause hearing are interchangeable.

PROCEDURE

The supervising officer may initiate revocation of probation, with supervisory approval, by completing and submitting a Report of Violations to the Court when it is believed that probable cause exists that the offender has violated the conditions of probation. The Court will review and approve the Report of Violations if probable cause exists.

  1. The supervising officer shall submit a Report of Violations within five (5) calendar days of obtaining knowledge that a serious violation has occurred. The severity of the violation may require the supervising officer to submit the Report of Violations immediately. The following major violations must be reported to the Court of authority and documented in Generic Notes in ICON:
    1. Violation of any federal or state laws (exceptions are non-assaultive simple/serious misdemeanor offences).
    2. Any violent or assaultive behavior other than simple assault.
    3. Possession, control, or use of any firearm, imitation firearms, explosives, or weapons defined in federal or state statutes.
    4. Sale, possession, continued or problematic abuse, transportation, or distribution of any narcotic or other controlled substances.
    5. When there is a serious threat to the safety of the community or to an individual.
    6. If the offender is on supervision for a similar offense and incurs a new similar offense regardless if it is a simple or serious misdemeanor.
    7. Failure to abide by specific court ordered/District imposed conditions. (i.e., court ordered substance abuse treatment, sex offender treatment, etc.) within the times frames set by the courts and/or District personnel.
    8. An offender whose whereabouts are unknown and has been unavailable for contact for 30 days, or reliable information has been received indicating that the offender is taking flight or absconding. (See Absconder Policy).
    9. When the offender has committed numerous technical violations and the officer and supervisor believe that supervision has lost all meaning and purpose.

      Note: Supervising officers may submit a Report of Violations, with supervisory approval, to the Court for informational purposes only when the severity of the offense does not require a revocation hearing (i.e. arrest for simple or serious misdemeanor charges or violations not deemed sufficiently serious). The supervising officer shall include the intermediate sanctions imposed in the recommendation section of the report.

  2. The supervising officer may use discretion in handling all other technical violations not listed in section 1. These violations need to be addressed by invoking intermediate sanctions. Officers should be creative in determining intermediate sanctions to fit the severity of the violation. All violations and the intermediate sanctions shall be documented in Generic Notes in ICON and in the case plan, if applicable.
    1. While prison recommendations are not generally made for offenders whose violations are entirely technical, there are some situations in which officers may recommend it. The following issues are considered when determining whether prison is a reasonable response to violating behavior:
      1. The characteristics of the offender which includes the offender's criminal history and risk level.
      2. The nature of the original offense.
      3. The behavior is identified as a risk factor for that offender and is a risk to the community.
      4. The behavior becomes a facility management problem in a residential facility, disrupting services to other offenders.
      5. The behavior is willful, blatant and reoccurring, with the offender defiantly refusing to abide by non-negotiable terms of the supervision agreement.
    2. Intermediate sanctions shall be considered to the extent that public safety is not endangered and the possibility of successful community adjustment exists.
    3. The following are examples of technical violations, which can be addressed through intermediate sanctions. They include, but are not limited to:
      1. Positive urinalysis or breathalyzer tests.
      2. Missed scheduled appointments/programming.
      3. Curfew violations (if applicable).
      4. New arrest for non-assaultive simple/serious misdemeanors.
      5. Offenders who are unemployed, but are capable of gaining and maintaining employment.
    4. The following are examples of intermediate sanctions that can be used. Intermediate sanctions need to be approved for appropriateness by the Supervisor. They include, but are not limited to:
      1. Addition or modification of existing probation conditions. (form)
      2. Increased reporting frequency imposed on the offender.
      3. Referral to specialized units such as ISP, Drug Court or Day Reporting.
      4. Electronic monitoring and/or individualized behavioral contracts.
      5. Placement at a residential facility.
      6. Other options approved by the Supervisor.
  3. The supervising officer, with supervisory approval, shall complete a Report of Violations if at least sixty (60) days prior to the discharge date set by the Court, when the offender has failed to complete all court ordered and/or District imposed conditions.
  4. Preparation of the Report of Violations for the Court:
    1. The supervising officer will consult with his/her Supervisor when technical violations of probation occur and a Report of Violations is contemplated.
    2. The supervising officer will have five (5) working days to complete the Report of Violations on serious violations once notified and/or obtain knowledge of the serious violation.
    3. The supervising officer shall investigate and verify all violations on which the Report of Violations is based. The officer will have to prove in court that the violations did in fact occur by producing documentation (if applicable). Documentation may include, but is not limited to:
      1. Arrest reports.
      2. Discharge summaries.
      3. Statements from victims or witnesses.
      4. ICIS statements detailing current financial responsibilities owed the Clerk of Court.
    4. The supervising officer will complete the Report of Violations in ICON (See ICON Business Rules). The supervising officer's recommendation and justification regarding the final action or resolution of the situation shall contain the following contents in this orderly fashion:
      1. Defense attorney's name or if no defense attorney is listed, indicate Pro Se.
      2. What the supervising officer is requesting, such as a warrant or a hearing.
      3. A brief summary of the offender's actions while on supervision, both positive and negative.
      4. Detail all of the violations that have occurred. If violations include money owed, indicate the amount owed, the amount paid, and any remaining balance. If community service was ordered, indicate the number of hours ordered and how many were completed.
      5. The supervising officer, using his/her professional judgment, shall take into account public safety and the offender's needs (Best Practices) in determining what recommendation should be made to the Court addressing the violations. Recommendations may include, but are not limited to:
        1. Delete, modify, or impose additional court ordered conditions to meet the offender's needs.
        2. Referral to specialized programs within the department or through an outside agency.
        3. Contempt of Court time.
        4. Referral to a residential facility.
        5. Revocation of a deferred judgment (if applicable).
        6. Referral to the Violators Program.
        7. Revocation of probation.
    5. The supervising officer will forward the Report of Violations to the Supervisor for approval and signature.
    6. The supervising officer shall forward the signed Report of Violations to the Court of authority to be reviewed and approved, if violations are found to exist through the evidence presented.
  5. Addendums may be completed when additional information has been received or further violations have occurred prior to the original Report of Violations being disposed of.
  6. If the offender violates the conditions of his/her probation again, the supervising officer shall follow the same steps as above, but will indicate in the recommendation section the number of Reports of Violations previous filed. For example, this is the 3rd Report of Violations filed.
  7. The supervising officer, with supervisory approval, shall attach a hearing order and/or warrant when submitting a Report of Violations to the Court, unless the Court has already set bond and a hearing date.
    1. The supervising officer shall submit a hearing order with a Report of Violations to the Court when the offender is in custody in the county of authority for new aggravated misdemeanor or felony charges.
      1. The presiding judge will set bond when the Report of Violations has been approved.
      2. Court personnel will set a probable cause hearing within ten (10) calendar days.
      3. Court personnel will forward the Hearing Notice (date, time, and place) and the Report of Violations (alleged violations) to the offender at least five (5) days prior to the revocation/probable cause hearing.
    2. The supervising officer shall submit a Hearing Order with a Report of Violations for technical violations to the Court when the offender is not in custody or bonded out on a new charge, when the offender does not pose a threat to the community.
      1. The presiding Judge will need to approve the Report of Violations.
      2. Court personnel will set the probable cause hearing at its earliest available date.
      3. In Felony Court, supervising officer shall provide the offender with the Hearing Notice (date, time, place) and the Report of Violations (alleged violations) at least five (5) days prior to the revocation/ probable cause hearing.
      4. In Misdemeanor Court, Court personnel will provide the offender with the Hearing Notice (date, time, and place) and the Report of Violations (alleged violation) at least five (5) days prior to the Revocation/probable cause hearing.
    3. The supervising officer shall submit a warrant with a Report of Violations when the offender is posing a threat to community safety or to an individual.
      1. All warrants will need to be approved by the presiding Judge.
      2. The Clerk of Court will enter warrants in the NCIC system.
      3. Warrants are required on all probation violators who are in custody of another county and need to be transported back to the county of authority, or if an offender has absconded from probation, or if an offender has bonded out on a new charge but still possess a threat to the community.
    4. Warrant packets will need to be forwarded to the Fugitive Unit (Warrant Team). Packets will consist of:
      1. A completed absconder referral sheet.
      2. A copy of the arrest warrant and Report of Violations.
      3. A picture of the offender, if available.
  8. If it is determined from new information that the violations alleged are inaccurate, the supervising officer, with supervisory approval, shall recall the warrant immediately by completing a warrant recall form with the Court.
    1. A Judge must sign the warrant recall form.
    2. The supervising officer will place an original signed warrant recall form with the Clerk of Court.
    3. If the offender is in custody, the supervising officer will take a signed warrant recall to the county jail for the offender's immediate release.
    4. The Clerk of Court will remove the warrant from NCIC.
    5. The supervising officer will contact the Fugitive Unit informing them that the warrant was recalled.
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