My son got arreted 3 days ago and is scheduled to attend court on Monday 5/14/12. He is being charged with drunk in public/disorderly, obstruction, and probation violation. He was placed on court probation in 2008-2009 and it was scheduled to expire next month. Would it be advisable for him to plead guilty or no contest? This will be his 3rd probation violation in 3yrs. all misdemeanors. Will he be facing jail time?
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): California
Hello Jacustomer,It is always expected that when a defendant first stands before the judge and is asked how he pleads to the charges at his arraignment, he must say NOT guilty. This is the only plea that keeps all of his rights open. Anything else results in a criminal conviction and,as there would be no plea understanding, he'd be at the mercy of the court. He should have a lawyer, and can ask for a public defender if he doesn't have one. This case is all going to come down to what probation wants to do with him. If they intend to revoke him, they will recommend a resentencing on the old case, and this new one can be packaged with it. If probation is willing to keep him at libery, on the other hand, this isn't the kind of offense for which a great deal of time would be warranted, even. Probation is always hard to second guess. Although the offense he is charged with is not a serious one, it is nevertheless a new arrest, and as this is his third violation of probation, he may finally be out of luck. This is right on the edge and can go either way. Maybe it can be worked out with something like house arrest, which is why he must make sure to ask for a lawyer if you cannot assist him in retaining one.
18 yrs of NYC public defense. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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