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Standard Probation Vs. Intensive Probation

Posted on March 11, 2024 in

Probation is commonly included as part of a criminal sentence in Arizona. If you are convicted of any type of offense, you could face probation as a possible punishment. There are two different types of probation in Arizona: standard probation and intensive probation. The type assigned to you can determine the impact the probationary period will have on your life, rights and freedoms.

What Is Standard Probation?

Arizona’s probation law (Revised Statutes Section 13-901) states that the courts have the power to suspend the execution of a sentence and instead place the defendant in a period of supervised probation, the terms of which will be determined based on the circumstances of the case.  

The court can assign any terms or conditions of probation as it deems appropriate, including:

  • Regular meetings with a probation officer
  • Participation in treatment or counseling programs
  • Residency and employment restrictions
  • No-contact orders
  • Restrictions on internet usage
  • Electronic monitoring
  • Community service hours
  • Random drug and alcohol tests
  • Monthly fees

The period of probation will be determined based on Section 13-902 of the law, which lists specific lengths according to the class of the misdemeanor or felony crime. The court has the right to extend the period of probation by an amount of time it deems appropriate, however.

Stressed man due to probation problems.

What Is Intensive Probation? 

Defendants who are viewed as high risk – those who committed serious offenses, are repeat offenders, present a threat to public safety or are likely to commit crimes again – may be placed on intensive probation rather than standard probation in Arizona.  

As the name implies, intensive probation is a more intense or extreme version of standard probation. It requires closer monitoring and more stringent requirements. A defendant who is sentenced to intensive probation will be subject to almost the same number of regulations as a prison term. 

Someone sentenced to intensive probation may need to have several in-person meetings with a probation officer per week, for example, as well as submit to unannounced drug and alcohol tests. Community service hours and treatment and educational programs are also required. Other conditions may include a curfew and electronic monitoring to track the individual’s location. 

A probation officer will closely monitor the individual’s compliance with an intensive probation term and may conduct home visits to enforce its conditions. The goal of intensive probation is to provide more rigorous support and supervision to individuals who are at a higher risk of reoffending. By contrast, standard probation has fewer restrictions and is reserved for lower-risk offenders.

The Consequences of Violating Probation

If a defendant violates any of the terms or conditions of a standard or intensive probation order in Arizona, the consequences can be severe. The criminal courts can choose to modify or add conditions, revoke the probation, or impose additional punishments – including jail or prison time.

When to Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney 

While probation offers an alternative to incarceration, intensive probation can come with strict requirements that significantly impact the defendant’s life. If you are facing any type of criminal charge in Arizona, consulting with an Arizona criminal defense attorney is essential for navigating your case and a potential probation order successfully. Request a free consultation at Snader Law Group to learn more.