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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

General Questions About What Probation Is

Q. What kinds of fees will I be required to pay?

Q. What if I get behind on payments?

Q. What is your probation officer’s job?

Conditions Of Probation

Q. What about office visits?

Q. Will I be tested for drugs or alcohol?

Q. What is an ignition interlock device?

Q. What must I do if ordered to complete DNA testing?

Q. What if I have a drug/alcohol problem or have been ordered to complete treatment?

Q. What if I must complete a DWI class?

Q. How do I complete community service restitution (CSR) hours?

Q. What if I am ordered to complete a class not listed above?

Q. Can I leave town?

Q. Can I move?

Q. What must I do if I change jobs?

Q. Can I bring children to my office visits?

Q. What happens if I violate my conditions (rules) of probation?

Q. Can I get off probation early?

Q. If I have firearms and ammunition, can I keep them and/or buy more?

Phone Numbers and Hours

Q. What are the phone numbers to call and what hours are you opened for business?

 

GENERAL QUESTIONS ABOUT WHAT PROBATION IS

Q. What is the difference between probation and community supervision? 

A. Nothing, both refer to the same thing, and you will hear both terms used while completing your sentence.

Q. WHAT KINDS OF FEES WILL I BE REQUIRED TO PAY?

A. Court-ordered fees include:

• Payment of fines. 
• Payment of Court costs. 
• Payment of Adult Probation fees. 
• Depending on your particular case, the Court may add any of these fees: 
• Payment of your Court-appointed attorney fees. 
• Payment of restitution (repaying the victim for what was lost or damaged.)

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Q. WHAT IF I GET BEHIND ON PAYMENTS?

A. Remember, the payments are Court-ordered, and must be made. However, if you get behind your officer can recommend a new plan to the courts.

Note: If you have any questions about your payments, see your officer.

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Q. WHAT IS YOUR PROBATION OFFICER’S JOB?

A. Your Officer can be very helpful to you while on Probation. They can set up needed appointments, answer questions you have, and refer you to classes you must complete.

It is also your Probation Officer’s job to:

• Supervise you as directed by the Court, and to inform the Court how you are abiding by the rules. 
• Protect the community, by seeing you at home or work as well as in the office. 
• Provide community-based referrals, such as drug/alcohol counseling, preparation that will help you change your negative behavior.

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CONDITIONS OF PROBATION

While on probation, you are expected to follow your conditions set by the courts, and not break the law or use alcohol and/or drugs. You may also be ordered to complete classes and programs. Below are frequently asked questions about conditions of probation.

Q. WHAT ABOUT OFFICE VISITS?

A. You must be on time for each office visit.  Your Probation Officer will advise you of any paperwork you need to bring when you report for your next visit. Reporting to your Officer is very important.

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Q. WILL I BE TESTED FOR DRUGS OR ALCOHOL?

A. All offenders must submit to urine specimen that test for the use of drugs and/or alcohol. Those tests will be required by your officer and/or the Court.

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Q. WHAT IS AN IGNITION INTERLOCK DEVICE?

A. It is a piece of equipment that you must have installed in your vehicle if ordered by the Court. It is used to verify you are not using alcohol and driving. If you are ordered to have an Ignition Interlock device installed, but do not drive or own a vehicle, you must sign a Notarized Affidavit swearing you will not drive while on probation.

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Q. WHAT MUST I DO IF ORDERED TO COMPLETE DNA TESTING?

A. As of September 1, 2009 all felony convictions are required by law to submit to dna testing. The Judge may order dna testing in other cases as well.  You must give salvia sample when scheduled by your officer. This test will be conducted by your officer.

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Q. WHAT IF I HAVE A DRUG/ALCOHOL PROBLEM OR HAVE BEEN ORDERED TO COMPLETE TREATMENT?

A. You will have an alcohol or drug evaluation before you can start treatment. The evaluation determines the type of treatment you complete. Your officer will tell when to begin treatment. You will also be told the treatment co-payment you will be required to pay.

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Q. WHAT IF I MUST COMPLETE A DWI CLASS?

A. You will be referred to a program for DWI education. The DWI class must be completed within 180 days of the date you started probation. You will be required to pay the entire cost of these classes.

 

Q. What if I need help with my education or would like to get a GED?

A. There are a number of local educational programs. If you have trouble reading and writing, your officer can refer you to a basic adult literacy class. If you would like to learn how to speak English better, your officer can refer you to an English as a second language class. If you do not have a high school diploma, your officer can refer you to GED preparation and testing. To enroll in one of these programs, see your officer.

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Q. HOW DO I COMPLETE COMMUNITY SERVICE RESTITUTION (CSR) HOURS?

A. Your officer will refer you to complete your CSR hours. Those hours will either be completed at a Department approved nonprofit agency or through our Department’s CSR Work Crew. If you have any questions about your CSR requirement, ask your officer.

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Q. WHAT IF I AM ORDERED TO COMPLETE A CLASS NOT LISTED ABOVE?

A. There are several other programs provided in the community to help you. There are anger management classes, sex offender therapy, theft classes, etc. Your officer will refer you to the classes.

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Q. CAN I LEAVE TOWN?

A. You can only leave town if approved by your Officer. Since you need permission to travel outside the County, you should talk to your officer about any travel plans well in advance. If approved, your officer will give you a travel permit.

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Q. CAN I MOVE?

A. If you plan to move outside Hale County or out of State, you must get permission from your Officer before moving. If permission is given, your Officer will make arrangements to have you report to a Probation Office in the County/State where you will reside.

NOTE: Your Probation Officer must always know where you are living. You will need to get permission from your Officer to move at any time.

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Q. WHAT MUST I DO IF I CHANGE JOBS?

A. If you change jobs, or are no longer employed, you must notify your Officer immediately.

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Q. CAN I BRING CHILDREN TO MY OFFICE VISITS?

A. No, children cannot come with you to an office visit. Some office visits may take up to 1 hour to complete, depending on the purpose of the visit. You need to try and find someone to watch your children prior to your office visit.

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Q. WHAT HAPPENS IF I VIOLATE MY CONDITIONS (RULES) OF PROBATION?

A. If you choose not to follow the conditions of your Probation, your officer will take action. This action could include requesting a warrant for your arrest, the Judge could require you to return to court to add more conditions to your probation, or your probation could be revoked and you could be sent to jail.

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Q. CAN I GET OFF PROBATION EARLY?

A. The law does not permit Early Discharge for some offenses. However, for others, you can hire an attorney to petition the Court for an early discharge. See your attorney for more information.

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Q. IF I HAVE FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION, CAN I KEEP THEM AND/OR BUY MORE?

A. Your officer will discuss this with you at your office visit.  You need to ask your officer for specifics.

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PHONE NUMBERS AND HOURS

Q. WHAT ARE THE PHONE NUMBERS TO CALL AND WHAT HOURS ARE YOU OPENED FOR BUSINESS?

A.  The office in open from 8am-5pm Mon-Fri closed 12-1pm for lunch.  You may call 806-291-5221 and the operator will give you a list of officers and support staff within the department.

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