Insufficient Evidence to Criminal Conviction May Be Sufficient to Probation Revocation

Evidence that is insufficient to support a criminal conviction may be sufficient to support a revocation. See Ellerson v. State, 261 Ark. 525, 549 S.W.2d 495 (1977). The conditions of appellant's suspended sentence required that she "live a law-abiding life, be of good behavior, and not violate any state, federal or municipal law." In a hearing on a petition to revoke, the burden is on the State to prove the violation of a condition of the suspended sentence by a preponderance of the evidence; however, on appeal we do not reverse the trial court's decision unless it is clearly against the preponderance of the evidence. Pearson v. State, 262 Ark. 513, 558 S.W.2d 149 (1977); Reese v. State, 26 Ark. App. 42, 759 S.W.2d 576 (1988). Neither the same quality nor degree of proof is required for the exercise of the court's discretion to revoke the suspension of a sentence as is required for the finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt because the defendant in a revocation proceeding is not being tried on a criminal charge, and only a preponderance of the evidence is necessary to support a finding that a probationer has inexcusably breached a condition associated with his release. Ellerson v. State, 261 Ark. 525, 549 S.W.2d 495 (1977). The State only has to show that appellant violated one of the conditions of her probation. Ross v. State, 22 Ark. App. 232, 738 S.W.2d 112 (1987).