Dips and Dunks
A dunk is a period of up to 45 days in the Alabama penitentiary that can be imposed for a “technical” probation violation. This must be served with the Department of Corrections. Before you can be fully revoked for technical violations, you must have three dunks.
Effective January 30, 2016, the Alabama legislature changed the procedure for probation revocations. Instead of partial revocations and technical violations, we now have dips and dunks. A dip is when a probation officer puts the person in jail for 2-3 days, but a dunk is imposed by the judge.
This can end up being disastrous if you violate your probation because you can spend upwards of two months in jail and prison for a probation violation when it would have been much less under the previous scheme. This longer period is because of two things – first, you don’t credit for the time you’ve been waiting in jail on the dunk, which could be up to 20 business days, and, second, the dunk period doesn’t start until you’re transported to prison, which could take a week or more.
How much time is a dunk?
Up to 45 days, but it can be less.
Do I credit for the time I’ve already spent in jail waiting for the revocation hearing?
Not for the dunk. Any time you spent in jail waiting for the revocation hearing will be credited to you if you’re ever fully revoked. The law provides that a hearing must be held within 20 business days, though.
When does my time start counting for the dunk?
As soon as you’re transported to prison. I’ve seen this take longer than a week, and you don’t get credit for that time against the dunk period. However, you do get credit if you’re ever fully revoked.
What about non-technical violations?
The same rules still apply for new arrests – you can be fully revoked.
Are there any times that the dunk rules don’t apply?
You can still be full revoked for a new arrest or absconding, and the dunk rules don’t apply for probation on Class A felonies and sex cases.
What is absconding?
According to the Probation Officer’s Handbook, absconding means you must actively avoid supervision. This is more than just failing to report. The probation officer must attempt to make contact, and you must have either left treatment or been verifiably absent from your residence or employment. The officer must also conduct a home visit or call you.
What’s the difference between a dip and a dunk?
A dip is a 2-3 day jail period imposed only by your probation officer, without the judge’s involvement, but a dunk is a period of up to 45 days imposed by a judge.