Parole and probation are alternatives to incarceration. The difference between the two is that probation is in lieu of incarceration, whereas parole is an early release from prison to continue the sentence in the community. Under both conditions, the party serving a sentence is supervised and expected to follow certain rules, under the expectation that if those rules are broken, the individual will serve out their remaining sentence incarcerated. The conditions of the terms are clearly outlined and the party has been trusted to live unincarcerated to get back on track and be a productive member of society. Here, we will discuss the typical parole conditions and the consequences of not adhering.
Typical Parole Terms
The terms of parole will vary depending on the crime committed, the conviction, and the sentence. Parolees must follow all state and federal laws and remain in the state where the sentence is being carried out. The general parole restrictions include carrying a firearm, associating with known criminals, leaving the jurisdiction, or changing address without permission. Some acts that may land you in trouble while on parole include failing to appear for parole meeting, failing to pay fines, not completing court-ordered classes, failing to submit drug or alcohol test, not reporting change of employment status, not registering as a sex offender (if applicable), or committing a new offense.
Conviction specific restrictions will be dependent on the crime the parolee was convicted of. For instance, someone convicted of an alcohol-related offense may be prohibited to consume alcohol, have alcohol on their premises, or go to establishments that serve alcohol. The parolee may also be required to attend alcoholics anonymous meetings. All of the specific conditions will be outlined to the parolee and reviewed with the parole officer. A parolee will have frequent check-ins with the parole officer during their sentence.
Consequences of Parole Violation
Any violation of parole creates the opportunity for the parolee to be arrested — without an arrest warrant — and sent back to prison. Violations are reviewed by a parole violation board and weighed, depending upon the violation, the parole history, and the potential for the parolee to reoffend. When a person who is convicted of a crime is granted probation or parole, they are being granted the trust of the courts to behave responsibly and not break any more laws; parole is a chance to prove that the parolee has been rehabilitated. For that reason, Ohio courts do not look favorably on parole violations. Because a parolee has already been convicted of a crime and the parole is in lieu of prison, the standards of proof for parole violation are not high and the parolee may be sent back to jail if the parole officer can demonstrate “preponderance of the evidence.”
If you have commited a parole violation, don’t face the courts alone. Because “beyond a reasonable doubt” does not have to be proven, the courts have the upperhand; you need a parole attorney with experience and thorough understanding of Ohio law, on your side. Call Probst Law Offices for your free consultation today!