Did you know that more people get arrested in Ft. Myers for probation violations than any other reason? Probation violations are on the rise in Lee County. People are getting arrested on no bond holds. They find themselves sitting in jail waiting for a probation violation hearing. Why are probation violations on the increase?
One of the answers may be that more and more people are being placed on probation in the Early Resolution Court (ERC). Although well intended, sometimes the Early Resolution Court may work to a person’s disadvantage. If you are an addict, and you get placed on probation, unless you get help with your addiction, chances are, you are going to get violated and you are going to jail. Sadly, to save money, many people are simply pleading “no contest” to charges they could have beaten. The police sometimes violate the rights of the people they arrest. They may make a “profile stop” because of a person race or ethnicity. They may detain a person longer than necessary on a traffic stop to allow time to bring a drug sniffing dog. They may make a “pretext stop” claiming that a driver’s tint is too dark or the tag light is not working. They may induce a person to unknowingly consent to a search of a vehicle.
Unless a good, qualified, experienced criminal defense lawyer looks into the facts, many times really good defenses are overlooked. It may be unwise to simply rush into a plea, just to save the cost of hiring your own defense lawyer. Sometimes in life “free” is not the best way to go. There is an old saying in life that “you get what you pay for” and in my opinion, no person who has been arrested should make the decision to enter a plea without having a one on one confidential consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney.
Most lawyers, including our criminal defense firm, do not charge for an initial consultation. If you have been arrested, and the judge at first appearance has set you for an appearance at “Early Resolution Court”, think long and hard before proceeding without a lawyer’s advice.
Many people opt for using the Public Defender, even though they can really afford to hire a private lawyer. That may or may not be a wise decision. If you have criminal charges pending, feel free to call for a confidential free consultation at 239 334 8890