In Connecticut, the court may sentence you to either a period of probation or conditional discharge. The court has discretion to impose a period of probation after any criminal conviction, except Class A felony, given that:
1. Institutional confinement (present or extended) is not necessary for the protection of the public;
2. You need guidance, assistance, or training that can be effectively done through probation supervision; AND
3. It is consistent with the ends of justice.
When you are sentenced to probation, you will be required to pay a $200 fee and you will be placed under the supervision of the Court Support Services Division. However, the payment will not be required until you are released from confinement and have started probationary supervision.
Conditional discharge shall be imposed by the court upon conviction of any delinquency, except Class A felony, if:
1. Institutional confinement (present or extended) is not necessary for the protection of the public; AND
2. Probation is not suitable
When the court imposes conditional discharge, you shall be released but shall be subject to different conditions as the court may determine.
It is important that you have the help of the best Connecticut criminal defense lawyer in order for you to understand the conditions and criteria if, as part of a plea deal, you are sentenced to either a period of probation or conditional discharge.
The following durations of probation or conditional discharge can be expected based on the severity of your offense:
- Class B felony – less than five years
- Class C, D, or E – less than 3 years
- Unclassified felony – less than 3 years
- Class A misdemeanor – less than 2 years
- Class B, C, or D misdemeanor – less than 1 year
- Unclassified misdemeanor – less than a year if the imprisonment is six months or less; not more than 2 years if imprisonment is more than six months
However, notwithstanding with the above provisions, the court has discretion to impose the following, on a case by case basis:
- Class C, D, or E or unclassified felony – less than 5 years
- Class A misdemeanor – less than 3 years
- Class B misdemeanor – less than 3 years
If you are involved in a motor vehicle violation and sentenced to prison for more than a year, it shall be imposed as unclassified felony, for example, where you are convicted of multiple OUI/DUIs within a 10 year period.
Continuation or Termination
It is the responsibility of the probation officer supervising you to submit a written report stating the progress of the assessed needs and completion of your conditions of probation. The report shall be given to you when eligible for termination of probation.
Sixty days after the receipt of the report, the court shall continue or terminate the period of probation. The victim shall also submit a statement concerning the sentence of probation. The court must consider the victim's statement as well in determining whether termination of probation is appropriate.
A skilled and experienced Connecticut criminal lawyer will absolutely help you through probation or conditional discharge or even if you've been arrested to reach a plea deal that involves conditional discharge in avoidance of jail time. It is important that you have the best legal adviser to help you comply with the conditions required.