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Georgia Parole, Probation & Release All information & questions relating to parole, probation or release in Georgia should be posted here.

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Old 12-24-2004, 09:24 AM
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Exclamation FAQ: Georgia Parole

Frequently Asked Questions

found here: http://www.pap.state.ga.us/faq's.htm

1. What is the Parole Board?

It is the State's clemency agency, part of the Executive Branch of State government established in the State Constitution. The Board has authority to grant paroles, reprieves, remissions, and pardons, and remove disabilities imposed by law.

2. How long has the Board been in existence?

The Board was created in February 1943 by statute law, and in August 1943 Georgia voters ratified an amendment setting forth the Board's authority in the State Constitution.

The practice of parole in Georgia, however, is much older. Beginning in 1908 the State Prison Commission issued paroles, although with little authority to supervise the offender in the community. An even earlier version, dating to Georgia's first prisons, was the governor's conditional pardon. See also History of Parole.

3. What is parole?

Parole is the service of a portion of a sentence in the community and under the supervision of the Parole Board. Parole does not reduce the length of the sentence.

4. What is the difference between probation and parole?

Probation is an act of the court, not of the State Board of Pardons and Paroles. Probation instead of imprisonment may be ordered by a court for all or part of a person's sentence. Probation is not parole. Parole may be granted by the Parole Board after a person has served part of his sentence in prison.

5. Who serves on the Board?

The Board is composed of five members appointed by the Governor for staggered, renewable seven-year terms subject to confirmation by the State Senate. Each year the Board elects one of its members to serve as chairman. See also Board Members.

6. Who are the current Board Members?

Garfield Hammonds, Atlanta resident, formerly DEA Special Agent in charge of Southeast Region.

Dr. Eugene Walker, from DeKalb County, former Commissioner of the Department of Juvenile Justice.

Board Chairman Milton E. Nix, Jr., Commerce, Georgia native and current Conyers resident, a former FBI Supervisory Special Agent and most previously Director of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

J. Michael Light, of Atlanta, formerly Executive Assistant to the Commissioner of Corrections. He started his public service career as a parole officer in 1980.

Garland R. Hunt, Esq, Alpharetta resident, lawyer and consulting company owner, pastor and counselor

7. How often does the Board meet?

Board membership in Georgia is a full-time position so the Board is always in session. However, members do not meet as a group to discuss cases. They review and vote on cases individually.

8. Why don't Board Members visit prisons to personally talk to inmates being considered for parole?

Due to Georgia's large inmate population spread in institutions around the state, such a system would be unworkable. Currently the Board reviews more than 15,000 cases annually.

9. When are inmates considered for parole?

Unless an inmate is serving on a life sentence, or for an offense that mandates no parole, the case is prepared for consideration under the Parole Decision Guidelines and a decision is usually made in eight to ten months after entering a state reception prison.

10. Why are inmates considered for parole in less than a year after being sentenced?

By law, the Board is required to consider clemency for all inmates under its authority. At the time of consideration, the Board may establish a Tentative Parole Month in the future or may deny parole entirely. The Board may reconsider and change a prior decision in a case, for any reason, at any time, up to the time of release. Georgia inmates have a right to be considered for parole, but they do not have a right or "liberty interest" which requires release on parole.

11. Are inmates considered for parole more than once?

Inmates serving non-life sentences who are denied parole are not routinely reconsidered for parole. However, if substantive new information is received by the Board, the case may be reconsidered at the Board's discretion. Inmates who are serving life sentences who are denied parole must, by law, be reconsidered for parole at regular intervals not to exceed eight years.

12. What are Parole Decision Guidelines?

It is a carefully researched method of standardizing offenders' confinement times based on crime severity and parole risk. The Guidelines process is used to assist the Board in making consistent, soundly based, and understandable parole decisions on inmates serving non-life sentences. Implemented in 1979, revised several times since, Guidelines help the Board decide on a Tentative Parole Month (TPM) for the inmate or that he will complete his sentence without parole.

13. How is a decision reached by Board Members?

When an inmate is considered for parole, the case file is given to one of the five Board Members, who studies it, deliberates alone, and renders his or her independent decision.

On non-life cases, Board Members determine whether the Guidelines recommendation for parole denial or for a tentative release month is appropriate in each case or whether mitigating or aggravating factors should override the recommendation.

This process continues until the majority decision has been reached on whether or not to parole the individual, and if so, when.

14. Are Parole Decision Guidelines used to determine parole for lifers?

The Parole Decision Guidelines are used for non-life cases only. In life cases, primary emphasis during consideration is given to the nature and severity of the crime.

15. What sort of information is contained in the inmate file reviewed by the Board?

The file contains a personal interview with the inmate, diagnostic prison data, social background information, and legal circumstances of the offense(s), possibly interviews with prosecutors or arresting officers or victims. Criminal history is included in the file, obtained from juvenile records, the GBI and FBI. Letters from the community are read and pertinent information is extracted and placed in the file along with court official comments.

The Victim Impact Statement is a permanent part of the file, as is any correspondence by or on behalf of the victim. Prison reports of conduct, attitude or performance incentive credits are included, and lastly, the parole guidelines recommendation which has been based on factors extracted from all the information submitted.

16. Are all inmates considered for parole?

Offenders serving a non-life sentence for one or more of the "serious violent felonies" committed on or after January 1, 1995, are not eligible for parole and must serve 100% of the prison term imposed by the Judge. The "serious violent felonies" are murder, rape, aggravated child molestation, aggravated sodomy, aggravated sexual battery, armed robbery, and kidnapping.

By law, all other inmates in state custody are considered for parole at least once during their prison term, unless they are sentenced as a recidivist, to life without parole, or are under a death sentence. Georgia is the only state in the U.S. in which inmates serve 100% of their sentence for certain crimes, or if they are denied parole. There is no good time, gained time, or earned time applied to prison sentences in Georgia.

17. When is electronic monitoring used?

Beginning in January 1996 the Board began requiring electronic monitoring for all serious offenders released on parole. These offenders will have restricted movement from their homes for the first three or four months of their release and any violation may result in an immediate return to prison. Other parolees may be placed on electronic monitoring at any time during their supervision.

18. Why are inmates released by the Board, rather than serving their entire sentences?

In Georgia, the Judge sets the maximum term of confinement, and the Parole Board determines the minimum time to serve. The Board was created for the purpose of providing a non-judicial review of inmate cases, to minimize sentencing disparities, to consider rehabilitative efforts by the inmate, and to select those inmates, after careful review, most likely to succeed on parole.

In Georgia, as in other states, limited resources, increased incarceration rates, and lengthy sentences, has meant limited prison bed space. No system can accommodate the steady influx of full-term sentences. Without paroles from prison, overcrowding would result in Federal court intervention with mass releases and no state control over when or which inmates are released. Other systematic approaches, such as sentencing guidelines or structured sentencing, when implemented in other states, have resulted in a number of undesirable results such as inmates serving less time in prison, shorter sentences, fewer convicted felons actually going to prison, gained time or earned time further reducing the sentence, limited judicial discretion, increased appeals, and a reduction or elimination of important supervision upon release.

19. How much voice does the victim have in the parole process?

The impact of a crime on a victim, and the victim's concerns for safety are major considerations in each parole decision. In addition to parole denial, the Board has other restrictive options that take the victim into account, such as adding special parole conditions which ban the parolee from certain areas or require him to pay restitution to the victim. In 1991 the Board established its Victim Services Office so that victims and agencies representing victims would have a faster and more personal response to their needs. The Board continually strives for ways to attend to victims during this last phase of the criminal justice process. See also Parole's Office of Victim Services. However, while looking at each case individually, Board members also study the case from a relative standpoint, comparing each case to others which share similar components. The Board is entrusted to make an objective decision rising above political, and personal consideration.

20. Are victims notified of a parole?

Yes, if they have submitted a Victim Impact Statement or if they write and ask to be notified. See also Community Notification.

21. What are the benefits of parole?

Prison punishes the offender but does not teach him or her how to deal successfully with society. Most inmates eventually return to society, and usually with fewer employment and social skills than when they entered.

The first six months after an inmate's release from prison is the most vulnerable period. While experiencing the low self-esteem and disorientation typical after prison, he is often subjected to peer pressure to return to his former lifestyle. Offenders with substance abuse problems are particularly susceptible. The fear of returning to prison is not always strong enough to overcome the immediate pressures an offender may feel. A combination of monitored supervision and practical assistance in obtaining jobs, counseling, and support, can place the offender in a supportive, rather than destructive, context, and pave the way for his new, law-abiding life.

22. How are parolees supervised?

Parole officers, all of whom are four-year college graduates with extensive training, work to ensure the parolee re-enters society with all the community monitoring, support and guidance available to prevent the offender from returning to crime. Parolees are assigned a case plan based on the severity of their offense, their particular needs, such as literacy training, and the length of time they will have on parole. Each case is individually planned within an established structure of agency requirements such as frequent visits, reports, and other conditions to safeguard the community.

Parole officers regularly visit the parolee, his family, and his employer, to determine the parolee's compliance with conditions. Although every effort is made to help the parolee overcome addictions, learn new skills, and adjust to society's demands, the parole officer's primary responsibility is the community's safety. Georgia parole officers are POST certified peace officers who are authorized to arrest parole violators. See also Parole Supervision .

23. What is the cost of parole?

The cost of parole is $2.91 per day per parolee.

24. How much control does parole supervision provide?

There are degrees of supervision in the community just as there are in prison. Studies have shown that certain low-risk non-violent offenders actually perform better with moderate, rather than maximum, supervision. Others require much more structure and control. At the highest end of supervision is maximum supervision with electronic monitoring which is used in two ways: punitively, for parolees who are not complying fully with technical conditions of their parole and who need 24-hour monitoring to see if revocation is in order; and preventively, for offenders straight out of prison who could benefit by a more gradual transition into the community.

25. What is parole's success rate?

Each year roughly 12 percent of Georgia's 25,000 parolee population are returned to prison. Of these less than 10 percent are sent back for committing a new crime; most return for failing to abide by the technical terms of their conditional release.

26. How does Georgia's Parole Board rank nationally?

The Board has been in existence for more than half a century, and has evolved to a professional status envied by many other states and countries. The Board's Field Division has been accredited by the American Correctional Association, one of few field supervision divisions so honored nationally.

Because the Board was established by constitutional amendment more than half a century ago, it has built a strong foundation of procedure and research. Many states have had their paroling authorities recreated so many times that the lessons of history and continuity have been lost. Many look to the Georgia Parole Board as a model of soundness, professionalism, and responsiveness to the ever-changing demands of criminal justice.

For further information contact the Office of Public Information at 404-651-5897 or the Victims Services Office at 1-800-593-9474.
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  #2  
Old 11-26-2007, 11:22 AM
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Thank You Now I Know A Little About The Parol Board...
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Old 11-26-2007, 11:52 AM
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does anyone know when the recording on the automated parole line will change to reflect a specific release date? we've already been told what it might be (I say might because we were given a date before and it didn't happen) but it just says the month right now. i know for others the specific date wasn't reflected in the recording until a week or so AFTER the release itself. any ideas?

thanks!
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:51 AM
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Default I am also waiting

I am still waiting on the recording to change and give us a date too - our TPM is Dec 07 and I haven't heard anything from anybody... I was told that his counselor is supposed to bring him some paperwork to fill out about his address and then an officer is assigned to him and will come check out the residence and then a date is given. I just wonder how long does all of that take. What if the officer is messing around and doesn't feel like doing anything until the new year --- I hate having to depend on other people to do things .... Ok, I think I just needed to vent
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:11 PM
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see none of that has happened to us but we have a date already! like i said, (i think) it's not on the automated line but his counselor told me and someone in atlanta corroborated that date and my husband has been made aware of that date, too. i know what you mean about depending on other people-i think the worst part of this for me is the feeling of helplessness and the loss of control, especially to the monkey retards that run the GDC and parole board! if the control was lost to some COMPETENT folks i MIGHT be more calm about all of this.
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Old 01-20-2008, 02:02 PM
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Do they get their TPM after the final interview in diagnostics???
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Old 01-20-2008, 03:09 PM
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no they don't really get TPM they are in Diagnostics for 8 weeks and then depending on his sentence then they are transferred to their perm location. I hope this helps
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Old 02-26-2008, 10:00 PM
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When is the family contacted if someone is going to parole out of boot camp? What do they look for ? Do they visit the house? Are you notified first>
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Old 02-27-2008, 08:50 AM
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peggy lee, the family is NOT contacted, supposedly the inmate is. we just kept calling the automated number until it gave a TPM and then an actual date (404-657-9350). in our case they did NOT visit the house or do anything at all to verify the housing plan my husband had provided. the only heads up his mom got that he was actually getting out on the date we heard on the automated line was my husband was allowed to call her about a week before his date and let her know what time and where to pick him up. like i said, the inmate is supposedly notified re: the parole date but i was the one that had all the information before he did, if he ever had any info at all. you can try calling and talking to the inmate's counselor but unless you're VERY lucky the counselor's are shit-for-brains and won't be helpful at all.
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Old 02-27-2008, 08:58 AM
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My husbands counselor is very nice and she answers any questions I have. I only call when I really need to, but when I call she does answer her phone and is very helpful.
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Old 02-27-2008, 09:06 AM
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I posted my experience at the parole office yesterday with the parole board under "parole board employees". My impression is that they do not want you to call them, write them or anything unless you have new information that is critical to the inmate getting paroled. And yes calling constantly and writing letters can slow the process from what they say. The only info I got was that they HAVE made a decision but the woman said it was not being shown on her computer, not sure what that means but its something. She told me that my friend was eligible in April but they already went ahead and made a decision. Sitting and waiting is basically what they want you to do. I know nothing about boot camps and didnt know they released people early or kept people for long extended periods of time. And yes they claim they tell the inmate but we all know that sometimes we can get info before the inmate...I wish I had gotten the info before hand yesterday. Oh and even once they decide what they will do with an inmate, it still takes about a month or less for them to notify them. The examiner said they are just too busy.
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Old 02-27-2008, 09:32 AM
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Rotti, I do not know why they tell people that. I have learned that the squeaky wheel gets the attention. I call the parole board and I just keep trying until I get someone who is in a good mood. I am very nice to them even if they are mean to me. In my own opinion I think it is just a flip of the coin as to how it will turn out.
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Old 02-27-2008, 03:08 PM
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it's not just them "telling" people verbally-my husband received a printout from the parole board while he was in orientation/diagnostics @ coastal that said the same thing. i really honestly think they make that point because they ARE so ridiculously backed up because GA arrests for sneezing too loudly.
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Old 03-22-2008, 06:56 AM
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I found this info recently when I was doing some research for my hubby. He will paroled to Georgia when he is released. Hope it's helpful.

Mailing Address:
State Board of Pardons and Paroles
2 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, SE
Suite 458, Balcony Level, East Tower
Atlanta, Georgia 30334-4909
Telephone: (404) 657-9350

To send us comments or questions via E-Mail:
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Old 03-23-2008, 08:29 PM
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I have a question. Recently i called the automated parole board number and it told me that a file had been started for my fiance`. But it also says that a date will not be put on there and that the inmate will be notifed. From what i am reading, others have heard a date on there when they called. What does this mean???
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Old 03-23-2008, 08:32 PM
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I heard the date on the automated line then he got his grid sheet about 3 weeks later. Just keep calling it will change eventually. He was in the state system almost 8 months before it changed
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Old 03-23-2008, 11:33 PM
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Default parole number

When you call the 404-657-9350 to find out a TPM what # do you enter for the inmate? I entered his GDC# and was told that it had the wrong amount of digits. I tried with the 0's and without them. Any ideas?
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Old 03-24-2008, 05:13 AM
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you enter his EF number. If you don't know it call parole and they will give it to you. They did for me anyway.
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Old 03-24-2008, 05:14 AM
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Also you can get his ef number off the website. just PM me if you have any questions
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Old 09-09-2008, 09:53 AM
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My son is supposed to be moved to a work program before he comes home. His TPM is 09//09. I know they are supposed to be moved a year before they are released. How do I contact someone to make sure that he is on the list to be moved? Someone told me that I can call and they will tell me if he is set to be moved soon.
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Old 10-26-2008, 08:42 PM
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How would you find out if some one is getting a early release?Who would I call to find out?He only has 3 months left but he has been locked up for 2 years already.
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Old 12-01-2008, 11:47 PM
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I have a question. Today my husband was called to the counselor office and ask for his address and phone number which is his parole summary . How do find out what happens next after this step. His tpm month is may 09. I was told that they usually dont do address until 60 to 90 days of the tpm month. So I would like to know how do I find out the status of an inmate being released after turning in a parole summary to their counselor.
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Old 12-02-2008, 10:44 AM
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Parole review summaries are generally completed 6 months prior to the inmate's TPM. The paperwork is then taken and probably sits on someone's desk until whenever. Then 60-90 days before his TPM month, the paperwork is sent to the local parole office and the addresses are checked. This is what USUALLY happens. Sometimes it is much earlier or later for guys. HTH!!!
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:55 PM
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I know that a PAROLE HEARING IS A PRIVILEDGE AND IT IS NOT SOMETHINH THEY HAVE TO DO.
MY SON HAS 3 MONTHS 3 WEEKS AND 4 DAYS UNTIL HIS MAX POSSIBLE RELEASE DATE AND HE HAS NOT HEARD ANYTHING FROM THE PAROLE BOARD. HE SAYS DON'T BOTHER BUT REALLY HAS ANYON ELSE EXPERIENCED ANYTHING LIKE THIS BEFORE
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Old 12-29-2008, 07:28 AM
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today is dec 29th 2008 and we still have not heard anything from the parole board
but thank God he has 2 months 3 weks and 6 days left. parole board or not his time
is winding down and I am so excited. I am suppose to be sick, I have a cold or something and my chest feels heavy but I am going to te gym to celebrate, I'll be there a couple of hours and i a going to praise God and Thank Him for all He has done for us.
See the people at the pb are a little upset at the time my son was given, so I guess they figure let him do the whole 3 years, we at the door. He is already planning what he want to do wen he gets home. I told him leave all them clothes at that prison the only thing I want in my house from the GDC is him.
EVRYONE HAVE A BLESSED AND WONDERFUL NEW YEAR AND KEEP THE FAITH AND WHEN IT GETS TOOO HARD AND TOO CONFUSING PRAY SOME MORE< DON'T LET THIS SYSTEM GET YOU DOWN. OUR LOVED ONES NEED US STRONG> GOD BLESS YOU
ALL
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