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Name: In re Barber
Case #: B284060
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 09/14/2017

After probation expired, sheriff did not have authority to confine former probationer who failed to complete work release program. In 2007, Barber pleaded no contest to second degree commercial burglary, and the court sentenced him to three years’ probation. In 2010, the court revoked and reinstated probation and sentenced Barber to 365 days in jail. In August 2010, Barber began a work release program in lieu of his jail sentence. He failed to complete the program, and an “IRC Want” was entered into the county warrant system. He appeared in court on multiple occasions after this, but apparently no one was aware of the IRC Want. Barber’s probation ultimately expired in September 2012. On May 22, 2017, five years after probation expired, Barber was arrested on the IRC Want and confined. Barber filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus, arguing that jurisdiction over his case was lost when probation expired. Held: Petition granted. Once probation expires, a court loses jurisdiction to make an order revoking or modifying an order suspending the imposition of sentence or execution thereof and admitting the defendant to probation. Barber’s probation expired in 2012, and the trial court lost jurisdiction to take any action against Barber based on his failure to complete the work release program. Penal Code section 4024.2, which provides that if a person violates the terms of a work release program then the sheriff may take the person into custody to serve the “remainder” of his or her “sentence,” did not authorize Barber’s confinement. The court concluded that the word “sentence” in section 4024.2 can only refer to county jail term imposed as a condition of probation. By operation of law, this condition of probation ceased to exist when Barber’s probation expired. The court also rejected the sheriff’s argument that the work program was a contractual alternative to custody rather than a probation condition. The sheriff was directed to release petitioner from custody.

The full opinion is available on the court’s website here: