Michelle Fortune and Jason Simmons are Posey County Probation Officers who work out of the same office on the first floor of the courthouse. They and their spouses have been friends for many years. Michelle and Jason both graduated from North Posey High School (the Vikings), Michelle in 1995 and Jason in 1994. Michelle and Jason both graduated from U.S.I. (the Screaming Eagles) in 1999.
Michelle is married to Detective Jeremy Fortune of the Posey County Sheriff’s Department. They have two children, Emily and Reagan. Jason and his wife Christine have two children, Alexa and Logan. Christine is a credit analyst for Old National Bank.
Michelle and Jason give generously of their time, talent and money to several public organizations. Jason and his family attend Frances Xavier Catholic Church and Jason has been a volunteer youth baseball, softball and basketball coach for several years. Jason plays golf and mows a lot of grass at his rural home near New Harmony, Indiana.
Michelle fought and defeated cancer and continues to maintain a regimen of physical fitness. She has competed in Spartan Races and serves as president of the Mt. Vernon F.O.P. Lodge #133 Auxiliary. Michelle is also a volunteer member of the important Posey County Critical Incident Response Team.
Michelle has been with the Posey Circuit Court Probation Department since July 1999. Jason joined the Probation Department in 2003. Together they perform myriad duties while working mainly with adult probationers. At my request, they have listed some of their duties as set forth below:
Conduct pre-hearing and pre-sentence investigations and prepare reports as required by law;
Assist the courts in making pretrial release decisions;
Assist the courts, prosecuting attorneys, and other law enforcement officials in making decisions regarding the diversion of charged individuals to appropriate non-criminal alternatives;
Furnish each person placed on probation a written statement of the conditions of probation and give instructions regarding how those conditions are to be met;
Supervise and assist persons on probation consistent with conditions of probation imposed by the court;
Bring to the court’s attention any modification in the conditions of probation considered advisable;
Notify the court when a violation of a condition of probation occurs;
Cooperate with public and private agencies and other persons concerned with the treatment or welfare of persons on probation, and assist them in obtaining services from those agencies and persons;
Keep accurate records of cases investigated by the probation officer and of all cases assigned by the court and make these records available to the court upon request;
Collect and disburse money from persons under supervision according to the order of the court, and keep accurate and complete accounts of those collections and disbursements;
Assist the court in transferring supervision of a person on probation to a court in another jurisdiction; and
Perform other duties required by law or as directed by the court.
During the course of performing these duties, a Probation Officer often takes on other roles such as social worker, therapist, and broker of services. Although probation officers are not allowed to give legal advice they must be knowledgeable in many areas of the law as often times they become witnesses and must testify in Court.
Posey County’s six probation officers work as a team. The fact that long-time friends can collaborate on these important matters provides even better public service.