If you’re arrested for a serious crime in Boise, you can expect to face certain consequences. Depending on the type of crime you’re arrested for, you may be eligible for different programs allowing you to continue to live in the community. For example, some defendants are given probation rather than having to go to prison. Other defendants are sentenced to a certain amount of time but are released early on parole. It’s important to understand what the differences are between these two programs. It’s also critical that you know when a defendant is not entitled to these programs.
Criminal defense attorneys in Boise Idaho understand how these programs work. They work hard to get their clients the best possible sentence possible. If they’re able to get the charges dismissed – that is the best result. This isn’t always feasible. Sometimes the best they can do is get your charges reduced or negotiate a fair plea deal. Often times these deals involve some jail or prison time.
One thing about Idaho is that for certain felonies there are mandatory minimum sentences. This means that even if the judge wanted to, they aren’t able to offer you probation. Here, we’ll talk about the major differences between these two options. We’ll also explain what sort of crimes do not fall under these programs. If you’ve been charged with any felony in Boise, the best thing to do is call an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Idaho right away.
What is Probation and How Does it Work in Boise, Idaho?
When you go before a criminal judge for sentencing, he typically has a lot of discretion. This means that he can use his own judgment in deciding whether you should be placed on probation or perhaps in some cases send you to prison. Usually if the judge sends an individual to prison it is not for the maximum time. Your Boise criminal defense lawyer will usually work out a deal with the prosecutor and they’ll agree on terms of your sentence. In many cases – especially if it’s your first offense – the prosecutor may agree to probation.
Probation means that your sentence is suspended. As long as you complete the terms of your probation, you won’t have to go to prison. There are other times when the judge will withhold your judgment. This means that, as long as you complete your probation period, you won’t even have a conviction appear on your criminal record.
The court still has jurisdiction over you while on probation, but if its a felony, the Idaho Department of Corrections will monitor your program. For misdemeanors, the local county will typically have a misdemeanor probation office that will oversee your probation. It is important to keep in mind that for many serious drug felonies, probation is not an option. That is because these offenses carry mandatory minimum sentences. In these situations, the judge has zero discretion when it comes to sentencing.
What is Parole?
Parole is a lot different from probation. With probation, you may avoid jail altogether. With parole, you will spend some time in prison. When you are sentenced to prison the judge will typically give two types of time, determinate time (fixed time) or indeterminate time. If you are sentenced to actual prison time that is imposed, you will actually serve the determinate time. With the indeterminate time, however, you are eligible for parole if the parole commission allows it. When this happens, you will be placed on parole. The terms and conditions of parole are typically the same as they are for probation.
Contact a Skilled Criminal Defense Attorney in Boise Sooner Rather than Later
If you’re arrested and charged with a felony in Idaho, you don’t want to handle the matter yourself. Even if there’s only a chance that you’ll end up in prison, you don’t want to take a chance of being sentenced to the maximum penalty. Having a skilled Boise criminal defense lawyer by your side could mean the difference between having your charges dismissed or spending a decade or more in prison.
The best thing to do is to call an experienced Boise criminal defense lawyer as soon as you’re arrested and taken to jail. This way they can be by your side for your first court appearance. This is where the judge will read the charges against you and ask you how you plead. You don’t want to make a critical mistake at this hearing. It can have devastating and irreversible consequences down the road.
Call our office today and talk to one of our seasoned criminal defense attorneys at Hooper Law Offices in Boise.