Admission of violation is too little to revoke probation

A Marion County man’s admission of a probation violation is not enough to revoke his probation without an evidentiary hearing, the Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled.

In Paul Sparks v. State of Indiana, 49A02-1207-CR-593, the COA granted the state’s petition for a rehearing of its decision in Sparks v. State, 983 N.E.2d 221 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013). The appeals court affirmed its opinion that reversed and remanded for a new probation revocation hearing but granted the state’s petition for a rehearing to clarify the requirements of the remand.

Although Sparks admitted to the probation violation, the COA held that admission to be suspect in its original opinion.

Therefore, on remand, the appeals court requires the trial court to conduct an evidentiary hearing. At this proceeding, the state cannot rely on Sparks’ original admission but rather must prove by a preponderance of evidence that Sparks violated his probation.


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