How an Application to Accelerate and a Deferred Judgment Work Together
An application to accelerate can be filed against you in Oklahoma if you received a deferred judgement on a criminal matter as part of a plea agreement after a plea of guilty or no contest.
A deferred judgment can be a boon to a person caught up in the legal system. In essence, a deferred judgment is where the court sets a judgment for a crime, but instead of entering the judgment, the court defers entry of the judgment for a prescribed period of time. During that time, an offender must meet certain conditions set by the court for that prescribed period of time.
If all conditions are met, the judge can withdraw the plea reached. The charges are then dismissed and the court records are expunged or erased. This means that the sentence is never actually served as long as all the conditions set by the court are met and the matter is expunged.
Conditions might include probation, counseling, community service, attendance at AA meetings or anger management classes, and the like.
Who Files an Application to Accelerate?
The prosecutors can file an application to accelerate your deferred sentence at any time that you fail to meet the conditions set by the court or violate any of the terms of your probation. In essence, the application asks the court to re-impose your original sentence.
This is a noticed hearing in front of a judge. The application to accelerate is filed with the court and served upon you in a timely fashion so that you and your attorney can provide the court with a response that addresses the allegations made in the application. So if you are served with an application, make sure to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Your attorney can help provide a responsive pleading for the court that explains the circumstances any probation violation or failure to meet the conditions set by the court. At the hearing, you may be asked to testify and give further explanation. This is something that you and your attorney can cover before the hearing. If the court revokes your probation, you will have to go to jail for the remainder of your sentenced time.
Proof Issues at the Hearing
While a crime must be proven by a standard that is “beyond a reasonable doubt,” the standard of proof in a procedural matter is much lower, “by a preponderance” of the evidence. To illustrate, beyond a reasonable doubt might mean that you are 99.9 percent sure that the defendant committed the crime based on all the evidence presented. A preponderance is a mere 51 percent sure.
This standard of proof is much easier for the prosecution to meet. They only need to show that it is more likely than not that you violated the conditions set by the court based on the evidence presented.
Possible Outcomes After Hearing
Just because the state asks the court to revoke your probation and reinstate your original sentence doesn’t mean the court will do that. Your attorney may ask for more time or a different payment plan if the issue is that you have failed to pay your court costs or fees. If sobriety is a condition that the court set and you failed to stay sober, the court may require that you get in-patient treatment rather than out-patient treatment as a condition for continuing with your deferred sentence. Okla. Stat. tit. 22 § 991c
There are a number of ways the court might go on this decision. Your attorney will know what the court is likely to find persuasive and craft your argument in that direction. However, if you have had repeated violations of your probation, or if you have been convicted of another crime, it is likely the court will revoke your probation and order you to jail.
It is always better to adhere to a court’s order. But if you have made a mistake and violated a term set out by the court, it is best to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you make the best of the situation. An attorney can ask the court to make it feasible for you to comply.
Free Consultation With An Experienced Claremore Criminal Defense Attorney
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