In Iowa a person who has been convicted of a crime is often placed on probation. This means the judge has deferred all or a portion of the person's prison sentence and allowed the person to live in the community. Someone placed on probation will be required to meet regularly with a probation officer. The judge will typically put other conditions on probation, such as attending drug or alcohol abuse classes and prohibition from carrying any form of weapon.
Violating the terms of one's probation can have serious consequences. If a probation officer or the Department of Corrections believes a probation violation has occurred, they can notify the court. A judge will then issue an arrest warrant. When the alleged violator is brought before the court, the judge can find them in contempt of court, impose additional conditions on probation or revoke the probation entirely and send the person back to jail to complete the remainder of their sentence. If the entire sentence was deferred, the judge can impose any sentence that could have been imposed for the original criminal charges.
Anyone accused of a probation violation in Iowa should act promptly to address the situation. If the person believes the allegation is unfounded, the individual can contest it at the hearing before the judge. If the alleged violation consisted of a failure to perform an obligation such as attending a class or paying a fine or restitution, the person may be able to avoid serious consequences by taking care of the obligation right away. An experienced criminal defense attorney can provide advice and assistance to anyone facing allegations of a probation violation.
Source: Iowa Code, § 908.11, accessed June 19, 2016