State v. Regan, ___ N.C. App. ___, 800 S.E.2d 436 (May. 2, 2017)

The trial court had jurisdiction to revoke the defendant’s probation. The court rejected the defendant’s argument that the trial court in Harnett County lacked jurisdiction to commence a probation revocation hearing because the probation originated in Sampson County. It held: “A trial court located in a county where a defendant resides and violates the terms of her probation is vested with jurisdiction to revoke the defendant’s probation.” The court added however:

In order to avoid disputes, uncertainty, and costly litigation, the better practice for probation officers is to specify on probation violation reports any address relevant to alleged probation violations, such as the last known address of a probationer who has left the jurisdiction without permission or the address of the probation office where a defendant failed to attend a scheduled meeting. Additionally, in a probation violation hearing, the better practice for the State is to introduce direct evidence of any address relevant to an alleged probation violation. In this case, the indirect evidence—sufficient to allow the reasonable inference that Defendant resided in Harnett County when she fled the jurisdiction and violated her probation in Harnett County by failing to meet with her probation officer there—supports the trial court’s presumed findings necessary to support its judgment.

The court also rejected the defendant’s argument that the trial court lacked jurisdiction to revoke her probation because there was no record showing that her probation had been transferred from Sampson County to Harnett County. The court noted that the defendant had offered no authority to support this assertion.