What to do if I was unable to complete my sentence?

UPDATED: Sep 10, 2012

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What to do if I was unable to complete my sentence?

I was arrested last year for vandalism and was assigned 20 days of community service but due to an injury I got shortly after I was unable to complete it. I broke my arm bad and had reconstructive surgery. If I schedule a meeting with the judge do you think they will go easy due to the fact that I was incapable of completing and if so how? I am going to bring all my hospital paperwork as well for proof. Even though I have a giant scar up my arm from it.

Asked on September 10, 2012 under Criminal Law, California


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You need to visit with your probation officer if you were assigned one. Sometimes they will "amend and extend" your probation to give you more time to complete your sentence.  Probationers don't usually get one on one meetings with the judges because it is considered ex parte communications.   The prosecutor will also have to be present.  Instead, if you want time with the judge, you would be better filing a motion to request the extended time to complete the community service with an affidavit detailing your injury.  Next, request a setting on your request.  When you appear for that setting, take all of your medical documents with you.  You will make more progress with the judge if you ask for an extension, rather than an excusal of the sentence.  The end decision will be with the judge, but being proactive will serve to demonstrate that you are not trying to dodge an obligation-- but rather to fulfill it to the best of your physical abilities.

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