The temporary release of the prisoner who was convicted for a serious crime is termed as Parole in a legal term. The prisoner can apply for parole when the sentence imposed for a crime does not state a definite period of time. In case the release date is determined by the honourable court or the definite term of sentence, parole is not awarded says Miya Griggs.
There is a parole board authorised by the state governments which is an ultimate authority on whether the parole could be given to the prisoner or not in the given situation. The board has a discretionary power to parole a prisoner during any time of sentence or in some cases it is compulsory to award a parole after the completion of sometime behind the bars says Attorney Miya Griggs.
Parole is granted to the prisoner when the board find that the culprit has improved during the course of imprisonment and is no longer a threat to the community. Previously, the offender is confined to the prison in order to reform the criminal and does not create any trouble once he is released and become a law abiding citizen.
Initially, in the seventies the criminals were punished as severely as one is taking revenge for a wrong act instead of improving the individual. Most of the state governments in America, made reforms by quashing all indeterminate sentences, thus limiting the chances of parole. On the contrary, parole is being awarded to the prisoners to accommodate the culprits to be imprisoned for the ever-increasing crime rate.
The prisoner is bound to abide by certain conditions when one is granted parole by the authorities. The conditions should be reasonable and the board must keep in mind that the limitations should be such that must not be any hindrance to their reformation. The prisoner must report to the parole officer from time to time, the officer must check that the prisoner is not involved in any sort of crime or communicate with the criminals inside the prison before granting parole. The prisoner is not allowed to travel everywhere, must visit the psychiatrist, must report prior leaving the state and should not object to the search without a warrant.
If the prisoner is found violating the valid conditions of parole, it can end up the convict back behind the bars to complete his sentence. Written notice is sent to the prisoners address about the violation and the breach of law is heard in the court in front of the parole board before the final judgment.
The hearing of parole violation is entirely different from the actual trial. The public prosecutor is not required to prove that there was any violation done. The prisoner may be framed in the new offense, if the violations are severe even after the parolees acquittal, the board is still empowered to cancel the acquittal.
Violation of parole is not sticking to the various conditions laid down by the parole board. Committing a fresh crime when the prisoner is out of the jail on parole or leaving the county without prior permission from the parole officer.
There are some other small and technical violations that may put the culprit behind the bars again. Being an alcoholic itself is not sufficient evidence to start the hearing for the parolees to put them back to prison as it is a very small violation. Instead, the parole officer refer the parolees to attend meetings organized by Alcoholic Anonymous (AA) organization in USA and the parolees are required to obtain the proof of attendance to abstain the authorities to put them behind the bars.
The judgement in case of parole violations could be announced by the parole board by taking into consideration nature and situation in which one gone against the rules of the parole board. Initially, the case of parole violation is heard by the officer appointed to the parole board and then in front of the full bench of the board which is empowered to make the final decision whether the prisoner is sent back to the jail or not.