46.2203 Eligibility.

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The court may place a person on probation for a specific period upon conviction of any offense or upon suspending imposition of sentence if, having regard to the nature and circum-stances of the offense and to the history and character of the defendant, the court is of the opinion that:

(1) institutional confinement of the defendant is not necessary for the protection of the public; and

(2) the defendant is in need of guidance, training or other assistance which in his case can be effectively administered through probation supervision; or

(3) the defendant poses a significant danger to society such that continuing court supervision is appropriate.

History: 1979, PL 16-43 § 2; 2004, PL 28-9.

Case Notes:

Where one section of parole statute provided that parole should not be given unless institutional confinement is deemed unnecessary, and later amendment to another section of the statute was clearly designed to allow court to impose probation and conditional detention in certain cases where confinement is deemed necessary, the general rule stated in the earlier provision does not operate as a limitation on the power granted by the later provision. A.S.C.A. §§ 46.2203, 46.2206. Atuatasi v. Moaali`itele, 8 A.S.R.2d 53 (1988).

Statute providing for parole of prisoner who has served one-third of his sentence of imprisonment has no application to probationer whose sentence of imprisonment has been suspended and who is serving a term of detention, for a period no greater than one-third of the suspended sentence of imprisonment, as a condition of his probation. A.S.C.A. §§ 46.2203, 46.2206(3), 46.2209. Atuatasi v. Moaali`itele, 8 A.S.R.2d 53 (1988).

Where probation statute originally provided that probation could be imposed only in cases where incarceration was not necessary for the protection of the public, and also provided that a brief period of detention could be imposed as a condition of probation, but statute was later amended to provide that such detention could be imposed for up to fifteen years, the later enactment implicitly amended the earlier; court could therefore impose detention as a condition of probation not only for the purpose of rehabilitation, but also where incarceration was deemed necessary for the protection of the public. A.S.C.A. §§ 46.2203, 46.2206. Atuatasi v. American Samoa Government, 9 A.S.R.2d 67 (1988).

Under the 1987 amendment to the probation statute, sentencing judges are free to impose probation for reasons other than the rehabilitation-related provisions of the statute. A.S.C.A. §§ 46.2203, 46.2206. American Samoa Government v. Falefatu, 17 A.S.R.2d 114 (1990).

In cases of apparent conflict between two statutes, specific and later statute prevails over more general and earlier statute. A.S.C.A. §§ 46.2203, 46.2206. Atuatasi v. American Samoa Government, 9 A.S.R.2d 67 (1988).

Research Guide: MCC 559.012, 28 ASC 1.