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Community Control

In Florida, house arrest as a judicial sentence is referred to as community control. It is similar to probation except that the individual is confined to their home. Typically, the court will allow this person to go to work and school, but nowhere else.
Community control is a harsh sentence as it is very easy to violate. If the community control officer (similar to a probation officer) calls or drops by for an unexpected visit, you could be violated. Imagine...something as mundane as going to Publix could land you in state prison.
Community control is only available as a sentence or plea bargain for felony offenses, such as aggravated assault, burglary, and failure to register as a sexual offender. For more serious felony offenses, such as robbery, burglary with an assault or battery, or even attempted murder, community control may be available provided the criminal defense attorney is able to demonstrate the weaknesses in the State's case.
For more serious offenses, community control is obviously better than prison, but the idea of not leaving one's home is a tough pill to swallow. Even little things like running down the street to the grocery store, or making a quick errand to the post office can result in your being violated.
As a criminal defense lawyer who practices in Miami and Broward, I am familiar with community control as both a sentence and as a plea. Furthermore, I understand that when somebody on community control is violated, they may require immediate legal assistance.
Community control violations are similar to probation violations. That means that the State of Florida need only prove the violation by the greater weight of the evidence. When a client is faced with a community control violation, I always try to negotiate the best resolution that would avoid a community control violation hearing. At the hearing, the client faces the maximum amount of prison time that they would have faced on the underlying charge. For instance, if the client is on community control for burglary of an unoccupied dwelling, a violation of community control could send them to prison for 15 years.
Call me today if you or someone you know has a community control violation, or an open case where community control is a possible sentence.
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