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Trial court correctly revoked man’s probation in 5 cases

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A Washington Circuit judge did not abuse his discretion in revoking a man’s probation in multiple cases and ordering that he serve all of his previously suspended sentences, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.

At issue are five convictions, dating as far back as 1997, which included probation as part of Paul Hardy’s sentences. Hardy argued that the trial court could not revoke his probation in three of the five cases because he believed the revocation petition was filed more than one year after the maximum termination date under Indiana Code 35-38-2-3. But his argument fails because Hardy signed an agreement extending his probation in these three cases to January 2014 to allow him additional time to complete probation requirements.

The judges rejected his argument that the agreement was improper because he didn’t have an attorney when he signed it and it extended his probation longer than allowed by law.

Chief Judge Margret Robb pointed out that a probation modification agreement is like a plea agreement and once accepted by the trial court, it is binding upon both parties and the trial court. Hardy didn’t raise a challenge to the extension agreement before the trial court, so he waived any issues relating to it, she noted in Paul Hardy v. State of Indiana, 88A01-1203-CR-93.

Regarding the two other cases at issue on appeal, Hardy claimed since his probation hadn’t yet begun when the revocation petitions were filed, the trial court couldn’t revoke his probation and order him to serve his suspended times in these cases.

But trial courts may revoke probation at any time before termination of the period, and it can even be revoked before probation begins, Robb wrote.

 

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