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Can Double Jeopardy be used in this Violation of Probation case?Someone was released...

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mjturner88 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted September 17, 2008 at 11:02 AM via web

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Can Double Jeopardy be used in this Violation of Probation case?

Someone was released on a Friday after being given time served for theft under $500, Driving without a license, and breaking and entering into 3 vehicles. Monday went to see probation officer and was told to come back Thursday for the next visit. Recieved a phone call stating that this person had to go re-register as a sex offender after being released from Detention Center. Arrived at station to register and immediatly was arrested on a warrent for Violation of Probation on the theft under $500, Driving without a license, and breaking into the vehicles. Can this be considered Double Jeopardy because the person had already been sentenced for this crime and fufilled that?

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urthona | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

Posted September 17, 2008 at 9:06 PM (Answer #1)

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The constitutional prohibition against double jeopardy protects a person from being subjected to a trial and possible conviction more than once for the same alleged offense.

I infer from your statement of events that the person was arrested for violating his probation order for a prior conviction (sexual assault?). A violation of probation and the new crime (theft, et al.) are two separate matters, even if the new charge or conviction is the reason for the violation.

Probation is a privilege. Few of the rights that apply to criminal trials apply to probation violations. Probation is a conditional release. It can be revoked if, during the probationary period, any technical conditions of the probation order are not met or if a new crime is committed.

A violation of probation can result in a modification of the sentence imposed for the prior conviction. The fact that the person served the sentence for the second offense does not prevent the modification of the prior conviction’s sentence. This is not double jeopardy because the probation violation caused by committing a second crime is not, in itself, a crime.

Disclaimer: This post contains general legal information and should not be construed as legal advice to be applied to any specific factual situation. Each reader should consult a lawyer if you want a qualified professional’s assurance that this information, and your interpretation of it, is appropriate to your particular situation.

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