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  1. #1

    Default When Does Probation Actually Start

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Missouri

    I used Marijuanna the day before my court and sentencing. Upon Drug testing, they are charging me with a violation. I wasn't actually on probation when I used the drug.. was I?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    173

    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    No, you weren't on probation for the original offense you were going to court for. It sounds like you were scheduled to be sentenced the day before you were tested. Assuming you weren't already on probation for a different offense, the court had yet to sentence you and as such your drug use would not be considered a violation of your probation.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    3,695

    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    Were you tested before or after sentencing? What exactly did the terms of your probation say with regard to drug use?

    Had you already plead guilty? Were you given any instructions by the court as to drug use prior to sentencing?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    The argument that I use is that you know you are about to be placed on probation. Most folks know someone who is on probation prior to them taking the deal. One major condition of probation is that you don't do anything iollegal. Smoking marijuana is illega. As an officer, if your level is so high because you smoked the day before, I can eeasily argue that you used the day of.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    It appears they have the proof they need. It is apparently up to you, to prove you did not use marijuana. Here is are excerpts from Missouri Dept. of Corrections Whitebook guidelines for granting probation;

    Section 559.021 (1) RSMo. reads: "The conditions of probation shall be such as the Court in its discretion deems reasonably necessary to ensure that the defendant will not again violate the law. When a defendant is placed on probation he shall be given a certificate explicitly stating the conditions on which he is being released."
    also
    The specific conditions of your supervision may be amended or deleted or additional conditions added at the discretion of the Parole Board or your Sentencing Court.
    and
    As a part of your supervision, you will be expected to undergo urinalysis or other types of drug testing on a random basis. If drugs are detected, this will also constitute a violation of your supervision.
    It appears they deem your being a pot head falls within their discretion. You should have read the terms you agreed to and asked questions, before signing on the line. I know, you knew they would not grant you probation if they knew you had already been breaking the law.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    I had pled guilty in a prior court date. This particular court was for sentencing. I was not on probation prior to this. I was tested the day after court. It was urine test, does it show a strength of drug in my system? I smoked prior to court because I knew I would be on probation and not able to smoke for the duration of my probation. The probation Dept. is not pressing charges, it's the DA.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    3,695

    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    The DA is charging you with a probation violations without the probation department initiating it? Odd.

    Are they alleging you smoked after sentencing but prior to the test? It sounds stupid but folks do it. Also for future reference, if you know you are dealing with the justice system...you need to stop smoking until your involvement is completely over.

    The only real defense here, if they are alleging you smoked after sentencing, is that you smoked prior to sentencing. Be careful with this though. Did the court, after your guilty plea but prior to sentencing, make any reference/give you any direction as to drug use?

  8. #8

    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    I understand I screwed up, but knew I wasn't going to smoke during probation. Use was prior to court with sentencing. No reference to drug use before court except for possible loss of bond in earlier courts.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Illinois
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    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    It doesn't matter what you knew you were going to do while on probation. You smoked while going into the sentencing process. In my state, the ASA's can violate instanter before the PO gets a chance. Sounds like that's what happened to you. If saubstance abuse treatment was a condition, I'm willing to bet it is now.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: When Does Probation Actually Start in Missouri

    You cannot be found to have violated your probation before you are sentenced to probation. On the other hand, the prosecutor can bring a motion to revoke your probation, and the statute (RSMo Sec. 559.036) does not indicate that the motion can only be filed in the event of a violation of probation. I expect that the prosecutor has acted because the probation department has taken you at your word that you committed the additional crime while on pretrial release, and that it is thus not a probation violation, and so the prosecutor is asking that the court revoke its sentence of probation and issue a new sentence based upon the facts not known to it at the time of sentencing. But you could help us out by actually telling us what the prosecutor says in the motion.

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