CALDWELL, COMAL, AND HAYS COUNTIES CSCD
Community Supervision and Corrections (Adult Probation)
Information Below includes: Types of Supervision, explanation of Programs and Services, Revocation information, Early Termination Information, Conditions of Probation, Legal Warnings, and Civil Rights pertaining to offenders.
TYPES OF SUPERVISION
PRETRIAL SUPERVISION: A person may be required by the Court to participate in a Bond Supervision or Pre-Trial Diversion Program. Conditions will vary and may include to abstain from the use of alcohol or any illicit drug use, submit to random urinalysis or breath analysis, have no contact with certain persons or minors, and any other conditions ordered by the Court. Fees are ordered as conditions of bond or pre-trial supervision.
FELONY CONVICTION PROBATION: A person placed on Felony Probation (Community Supervision) has been sentenced to a term of incarceration in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice-Institutional Division (the state penitentiary) or a State Jail facility and the judge has allowed the individual to serve that term out in society, subject to the conditions of probation. There are several civil rights and federal firearm disabilities addressed below. The Texas Department of Public Safety will automatically suspend the driver license of anyone convicted of a drug offense, Driving While Intoxicated- Subsequent.
FELONY DEFERRED ADJUDICATION: When a person has been placed on Deferred Adjudication, the judge has indicated that there is sufficient evidence to find the defendant guilty, but the case is put on “hold”, and the defendant is placed on probation for a specific number of years, subject to the conditions of probation. The defendant has not been found guilty and had punishment assessed at this stage of the trial, therefore, there is no felony conviction or interruption of a defendant’s rights except that he may not purchase, or receive any firearms. If a probationer’s Deferred Adjudication is revoked, the Judge may assess the maximum punishment allowed by law.
MISDEMEANOR CONVICTION PROBATION: Unless a defendant is placed on Misdemeanor Probation for theft or Assault Family Violence, no civil rights are lost. The Judge generally sentences the defendant to a period of confinement in jail, but probates the sentence for a time period of up to the maximum allowed by law. In Driving While Intoxicated cases after January 1, 1984, a misdemeanor probated sentence can be used to enhance future DWI offenses to a second or felony DWI. A person who has been convicted of Assault Family Violence may not possess a firearm for five years after their discharge from probation. The Texas Department of Public Safety will automatically suspend the driver license of anyone convicted of a drug offense, a DWI offense committed under the age of twenty-one, DWI-Second, and for Driving While License Suspended..
MISDEMEANOR DEFERRED ADJUDICATION: A person receiving Deferred Adjudication for a misdemeanor case is not convicted of the offense but is subject to the conditions of probation until completion of the assessed term of probation. If a probationer’s Deferred Adjudication Probation is revoked, the Judge may assess the maximum punishment allowed by law. Individuals probated for DWI offense are not eligible for Deferred Adjudication.
THE MAIN DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MISDEMEANOR AND A FELONY CASE IS THAT A DEFENDANT CAN BE SENTENCED TO PRISON OR A STATE JAIL FOR A FELONY OFFENSE BUT NOT FOR A MISDEMEANOR. IF MISDEMEANOR PROBATION IS REVOKED, THE DEFENDANT MAY BE SENTENCED TO SERVE TIME IN THE COUNTY JAIL.
CONDITIONS OF PROBATION:
Common conditions of probation include the following items. REFER TO YOUR COPY OF THE CONDITIONS FOR SPECIFIC ORDERS IN YOUR CASE.
COMMIT NO OFFENSE AGAINST THE LAWS OF THIS STATE, OR ANY OTHER STATE, OR OF THE UNITED STATES. This means any violation of the law. Notify your Probation Officer upon being arrested or ticketed. The Probation Officer is notified by the Department of Public Safety of any arrest, so it is best to let your Officer know right away.
AVOID INJURIOUS OR VICIOUS HABITS; ABSTAIN FROM THE USE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES AND NARCOTIC OR HABIT FORMING DRUGS, MARIJUANA AND CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES. While on probation, absolutely no drinking of alcoholic beverages. Usage of narcotic or habit-forming drugs without a physician’s permission is not allowed. NO EXCEPTIONS.
AVOID PERSONS OR PLACES OF DISREPUTABLE OR HARMFUL CHARACTER: (INCLUDING PLACES WHERE NARCOTIC DRUGS, MARIJUANA AND CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ARE PRESENT, SOLD OR USED; AND WHERE ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES ARE SOLD), AND DO NOT ASSOCIATE WITH PERSONS WHO HAVE A CRIMINAL RECORD. Do not be in the company of anyone convicted of a felony, co-defendants in your case, or anyone who can get you in trouble. Stay away from people who use drugs or alcohol, and places where they are sold, served, or used. Stay out of bars and “beer-joints”, etc. It is permissible to go to restaurants and stores that have alcohol as long as you do not drink.
REPORT TO THE PROBATION OFFICER WEEKLY OR AS OTHERWISE DIRECTED. This is a maximum reporting schedule. When you are first placed on probation, your Officer may have you report this often. If you live or work outside of this County, you are required to report as directed by the supervising Probation Office in the county where your case is transferred, and send written reports to this office as instructed.
PERMIT THE PROBATION OFFICER TO VISIT YOU AT YOUR HOME OR ELSEWHERE. The Probation Officer may visit you at your home or job. These visits generally will be unannounced. The purpose of these visits is to assist the Probation Officer in knowing you better, to converse with you in your own surroundings, and to talk with your family regarding any progress or problems.
OBTAIN AND KEEP GAINFUL EMPLOYMENT IN A LAWFUL OCCUPATION. If you are physically able, you must work, unless you are retired, fulltime student, or fully supported by another willing individual such as a spouse. If you cannot find a job, your Probation Officer can tell you the best places to look for jobs, job training, etc. Occasionally the Courts or the Probation Officer will not allow a probationer to work in a particular occupation or location, or may require that the probationer advise the employer of the fact that he/she is on probation. This occurs primarily when a probationer is in a position to commit an offense similar to the one for which he/she is on probation.
DO NOT CHANGE YOUR PLACE OF RESIDENCE AND REPORT ANY CHANGES IN EMPLOYMENT OR MARITAL STATUS TO YOUR OFFICER WITHIN FIVE DAYS. Before changing jobs or moving, you must secure permission from your Probation Officer.
REMAIN WITHIN THE COUNTY UNLESS GIVEN WRITTEN PERMISSION TO DEPART BY THE PROBATION OFFICER. Unless otherwise directed, you will be permitted limited travel in your county of residence and surrounding counties. If you are to be out of this county for more than 24 hours, you must secure a travel permit and permission from your Probation Officer. If you plan to travel out of this designated area for any period of time, but within Texas you must obtain permission from your Probation Officer. If you wish to leave Texas you must obtain an Out-of-State travel permit from your Probation Officer. All travel outside the United States requires the approval of your sentencing Judge. If you leave Texas without written permission, you will be considered a fugitive. The Probation Officer or the Judge may limit your travel, as they deem appropriate.
SUPPORT YOUR DEPENDENTS. This includes the payment of Court ordered child support and normal support of your family dependents.
PAY YOUR FINE IF ONE WERE ASSESSED, AND THE COSTS OF COURT, IN ONE OR SEVERAL SUMS, AND MAKE RESTITUTION OR REPARATION IN ANY SUM THE COURT SHALL DETERMINE. Payments must be made as noted in the Conditions of Probation, by the tenth (10 th) day of each month by money order. If you are unable to pay, you must contact your Probation Officer to explain why payment cannot be made. You must report as directed by your Probation Officer even if you cannot make your payment.
PAY A MONTHLY PROBATION SUPERVISION FEE TO THE ADULT PROBATION DEPARTMENT BY THE TENTH (10th) DAY OF EACH MONTH FOLLOWING THIS ORDER. Every person placed on probation is required to pay a monthly probation supervision fee for every month he is on probation, in cashier’s check or money order only, to the probation office in the county where his probation was granted.
SUBMIT TO TESTING FOR ALCOHOL OR DRUGS AND PAY REQUIRED FEES. These samples may be taken at any time and as often as once a day by your supervising probation Officer. Submission of doctored (or adulterated) samples will be dealt with by possible additional charges and the Courts through revocation.
PERFORM A SPECIFIED NUMBER OF HOURS OF COMMUNITY SERVICE RESTITUTION UNDER THE DIRECTION AND SUPERVISION OF THE PROBATION OFFICER. This is work for which you will not be paid but will be done for the community’s benefit. Your Probation Officer will make arrangements for referral to a court-approved agency. If you were ordered to perform more than the minimum hours allowed by law for the degree of your offense and you perform 32 hours or more per month you may be eligible for an additional 8 hours of extra credit. Extra credit towards CSR may also be granted for obtaining a GED or high school diploma.
PROVIDE VERIFICATION OF EMPLOYMENT AND INCOME. You are required to provide copies of paycheck stubs, W-2 forms, Federal Income Tax returns and similar documents.
REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR DEPORTED PROBATIONER. If deported, do not return to the United States illegally. Report by mail every month and provide verification of income. If you return to the United States, you must report to the Community Supervision and Corrections Department within 10 days of re-entry.
THERE ARE MANY CONDITIONS WHICH MAY BE ADDED TO YOUR PROBATION SUCH AS ALCOHOL OR DRUG EDUCATION, PARTICIPATION IN ALCOHOLICS AND/OR NARCOTICS ANONYMOUS MEETINGS, MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING, IN OR OUT PATIENT DRUG OR ALCOHOL TREATMENT, ETC. YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR COMPLETING THESE PROGRAMS OR SPECIAL CONDITIONS AND FOR THE FINANCIAL COST OF MOST. IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, CHECK WITH YOUR PROBATION OFFICER.
COMMUNITY SUPERVISION PROGRAMS & SERVICES
Please know that you have access to a broad range of programs and services available to you through your community supervision officer (CSO) which are provided through our in-house programs division including the following: anger management, budgeting, critical thinking skills development, drug education, DWI Education, supportive out-patient treatment, individual therapy, individual substance abuse counseling, crisis counseling, life management skills development including goal setting, values examination, communication skills, stress management, and problem solving, special needs support group, aftercare, relapse prevention, women’s support groups, long term therapy groups, victim impact panels, bridge groups to A.A./N.A., parenting, and domestic violence prevention with partner counseling group with child care. Through agency contracts and special regional initiatives, you have access through your CSO to intensive out-patient treatment, residential chemical dependency treatment, and psychological evaluation.
REVOCATION OF PROBATION
FELONY and MISDEMEANOR: If one or more conditions of probation are violated, a Motion to Revoke or Adjudicate Probation can be filed by the District Attorney’s Office and a warrant for arrest issued. Upon arrest, a probationer is usually held in the County jail, sometimes without bond, until the time of the trial. If a probationer’s whereabouts are unknown, the warrant information will be placed in the Texas and National Crime Information Computers, and when a probationer is checked by any police officer in the country, this information will be conveyed to them, leading to an arrest. There is no “statue of limitations” regarding the age of the pending motion. At the time of trial, a probationer is not entitled to a jury trial, and the burden of proof is lowered to a preponderance of evidence. If the Judge revokes the probation and the defendant is sentenced to a period of confinement, no credit is given for any time served on probation although credit may be given for successful completion of residential treatment.
The law in Texas allows for the Court to consider a defendant for early release from probation after they have satisfactorily completed one-third of the original probationary period or two years of probation. Persons placed on standard probation (adjudicated) after September 1, 2007 for three years or more are considered for an early termination after having completed one half or a minimum of two years. There are exceptions in the law prohibiting early termination as noted below in bold text. Early Termination is not probable if any violations of probation have occurred during the supervision. All fines, court costs, restitution, etc. must be paid-in-full and probation supervision fees must be up-to-date for the Court to consider an early discharge. If you do not qualify for an Administrative consideration for early termination you have the right to hire an attorney to petition the Court on your behalf.
Individuals convicted of Intoxication Offenses under sections 49.04-49.08 Penal Code, Sex Offenses requiring registration under Chapter 62 and defendants convicted of a felony described by Section 3g CCP are not eligible for Early Termination by law.
UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF A FIREARM BY FELON (P.C. 46.04): A person convicted of a felony commits a third degree felony offense and is subject to incarceration in the penitentiary if he is found in the possession of a firearm prior to five years after their date of discharge from probation. A person may apply for a release from the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and if granted they may five years after their release from probation only possess one in their home. Additionally, a person who has been convicted of Assault Family Violence Misdemeanor or Felony may not possess a firearm for five years after their date of discharge.
UNAUTHORIZED ABSENCE FROM COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS FACILITY (P.C. 38.113): A person required as a condition of supervision (probation) to submit to a period of detention or treatment in a community corrections facility and fails to report or leaves without approval commits an offense and is subject to incarceration in a state jail facility.
CIVIL RIGHTS AND THE FEDERAL FIREARMS CONTROL ACT
THE RIGHT TO VOTE
1. Misdemeanor Supervision - A person on misdemeanor supervision is not affected and may vote.
2. Deferred Felony Supervision - A person on this type of supervision is not affected and may vote.
3. Regular or Shock Felony Supervision - A person on either of these may not vote until s/he is discharged from a sentence, including any term of incarceration, parole supervision or a period community supervision ordered by any court. Once a person has completed the term of community supervision, s/he can immediately register and be eligible to vote in an election.
THE RIGHT TO HOLD PUBLIC OFFICE
1. Misdemeanor Supervision - A person on misdemeanor supervision may hold public office.
2. Deferred Felony Supervision - A person on this type of supervision may hold public office.
3. Regular or Shock Felony Supervision - A person on either one of these types of supervision may not hold public office until discharged with rights restored. If rights are not restored, the defendant may not hold public office.
Exception: A person who is on Felony D.W.I., Involuntary Manslaughter, or Intoxication Manslaughter supervision, who was placed on regular supervision for a state jail felony offense before September 1, 2007, who is on regular community supervision for a sexual offense listed in Chapter 62 of the Code of Criminal Procedure or who is placed on regular community supervision for a 3g offense on or after September 1, 2007 may not hold public office, even after discharge from community supervision.
Note: This exception no longer applies to a person placed on regular community supervision for a state jail felony offense on or after September 1, 2007 who has had his/her rights restored upon discharge from community supervision. If rights are not restored, the defendant may not hold public office.
RIGHT TO SERVE ON A JURY
1. Misdemeanor Supervision - A person on misdemeanor supervision may serve on a jury.
Exceptions: For a criminal trial, a person who is on supervision for misdemeanor theft (including a deferred adjudication) cannot serve until discharged with rights restored. If rights are not restored, the defendant may not serve on a jury. For a civil trial, a person who is on deferred adjudication for a misdemeanor theft cannot serve. Moreover, a person who has a conviction for misdemeanor theft cannot serve on a jury unless the person has had his/her rights restored upon discharge from community supervision. If rights are not restored, the defendant may not serve on a jury.
2. Felony Supervision - A person on any type of felony supervision (including deferred
adjudication community supervision) may not serve on either a criminal or civil jury until s/he is discharged and the court sets aside the accusation and dismisses the
charges against the offender.
Exception: A person who is on Felony D.W.I., Involuntary Manslaughter, or Intoxication Manslaughter supervision, who was placed on regular supervision for a state jail felony offense before September 1, 2007, who is on regular community supervision for a sexual offense listed in Chapter 62 of the Code of Criminal Procedure or who is placed on regular community supervision for a 3g offense on or after September 1, 2007 may never serve on a jury.
Note: This exception no longer applies to a person placed on regular community supervision for a state jail felony offense on or after September 1, 2007 who has had his/her rights restored upon discharge from community supervision. If rights are not restored, the defendant may not serve on a jury.
RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS
1. Misdemeanor Supervision - A person on misdemeanor supervision is not affected, except that persons placed on regular community supervision for a domestic violence offense may not possess a firearm.
For one who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, the prohibition on the possession of firearms and ammunition does not apply if that individual has received a pardon for the crime, the conviction has been expunged or set aside, or the person has had his/her civil rights restored and the person is not otherwise prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition.
2. Deferred Felony Supervision - A person on this type of supervision may possess a firearm and ammunition and can go hunting, but s/he cannot buy additional firearms or ammunitions nor carry them across state lines.
3. Regular or Shock Felony Supervision - A person on either of these types of supervision may not possess, ship, transport, or receive a firearm or ammunition. Even if an offender is discharged from community supervision and the court sets aside the verdict and dismisses the accusation against the individual, s/ he may still be barred from possessing a firearm, depending on the position taken by each local office of the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, and Tobacco.
In such a situation, it would be necessary to obtain a release from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms of the Department of the Treasury. To request information on a release, you may write to the Assistant Director, Criminal Enforcement Division, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, P. O. Box 784, Ben Franklin Station, Washington, D.C. 20044.
Even if a defendant obtains a release from the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, State law still prohibits a felon from possessing a firearm before the fifth anniversary of the individual’s release from community supervision, and even thereafter, the felon can only possess a firearm on the premises at which s/he lives. This provision will apply to a felon discharged from community supervision whose conviction was not set aside by the court in accordance with Article 42.12, Section 20, Code of Criminal Procedure. See Cuellar v. State, 70 S. W. 3d 815 (Tex. Cr. App. – 2002).
Exceptions: A person who is on Felony D.W.I., Involuntary Manslaughter, or Intoxication Manslaughter supervision, who was placed on regular community supervision for a state jail felony offense before September 1, 2007, who is on regular community supervision for a sexual offense listed in Chapter 62 of the Code of Criminal Procedure or who is placed on regular community supervision for a 3g offense on or after September 1, 2007 may not possess, ship, transport or receive a firearm or ammunition unless a full pardon is obtained from the Governor or a release is obtained from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.
Courthouse Photos by Larry D. Moore, used under a Creative Commons ShareAlike License