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What Does Lifetime Probation Mean for Sex Offenders?

Posted on March 18, 2024 in

In Arizona, if an individual is convicted of a sexual offense, one potential punishment is lifetime probation. This refers to a lifetime of supervised release that lasts from the time the defendant is released from jail or prison until the day he or she dies. This punishment can come in addition to other lifelong consequences, such as being listed as a registered sex offender for life.

What Is Lifetime Probation? 

Lifetime probation refers to a type of probationary period that can be imposed on convicted sex offenders in Arizona as part of their criminal sentencing. It means that the individual must abide by specific probation conditions for the rest of his or her life rather than only for a specified period of time.  

Lifetime probation is typically reserved for individuals who are convicted of serious or violent sexual offenses, as it is a way for authorities to closely monitor and restrict an individual’s activities to protect the public. Lifetime probation will continue until the individual dies or until it is revoked or terminated by the court.

Stressed man facing criminal charges.

Can the Court Terminate Lifetime Probation Early? 

Yes, the court can decide to terminate lifetime probation early. Arizona Revised Statutes Section 13-901(E) states: “The court may terminate the period of probation or intensive probation and discharge the defendant at a time earlier than that originally imposed if in the court’s opinion the ends of justice will be served and if the conduct of the defendant on probation warrants it.” This decision could come after the probationer applies for a hearing or on the court’s own initiative.

What Sex Crimes Could Lead to Lifetime Probation in Arizona?

Certain sexual offenses listed in Title 13, Chapter 14 of the Arizona Revised Statutes can qualify an individual for a lifetime probation sentence, including: 

  • Sexual conduct with a minor
  • Sexual assault involving a victim under the age of 15
  • Child molestation
  • Sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Continuous sexual abuse of a child
  • Child sex trafficking

Typically, lifetime probation sentences are reserved for individuals who are convicted of serious felony sex crimes in Arizona. 

What Are the Restrictions Involved in Lifetime Probation? 

The specific restrictions and conditions of lifetime probation for a sex offender can vary based on the circumstances of the case and the jurisdiction. Common examples include:

  • Periodic check-ins with a probation officer
  • Prohibitions against interacting with minors
  • No-contact orders involving specific individuals
  • Mandatory participation in sex offender treatment programs
  • Restrictions on where the individual can live and work
  • Electronic monitoring devices, such as an ankle bracelet
  • Restrictions on internet usage and digital communications
  • Prohibition against owning or possessing firearms
  • Random, unannounced drug and alcohol testing
  • Compliance with Arizona’s sex offender registration laws

Violating any of the conditions of lifetime probation can result in serious consequences and additional penalties, including imprisonment.

How Can a Criminal Defense Attorney Help You?

It is essential to consult with a qualified Phoenix sex crimes attorney if you have been arrested or accused of any type of sexual offense in Arizona. You may be facing serious charges and life-changing consequences, including the possibility of being on probation for the remainder of your life. 

Your lawyer can fight on your behalf to have your case dismissed or achieve an acquittal. Your lawyer can help minimize the punishments that you face if you are convicted of a sex crime, including negotiating for a sentence that does not involve lifetime probation. If you are currently on lifetime probation, a lawyer can help you review your options for possible early termination.

To learn more about lifetime probation sentences for sex offenders in Arizona, request a free consultation with an attorney at Snader Law Group.