Texas Legal Process:
Representation is key to fighting to keep your status as a parolee. If you have been arrested for a parole violation, or you have been arrested for a new offense while on parole, you need an attorney to represent your interests at EVERY phase of this process and fight for the best possible outcome BEFORE signing away any rights you might have to hearings.
- A parole preliminary hearing is a two part hearing: the Allegation Phase & Adjustment/Mitigation Hearing
- Allegation phase
- In this phase the parole officer presents evidence regarding the alleged parole violation.
- If there is a finding of a parole violation, an unrelated parole board officer will consider the evidence to determine whether a violation occurred.
- If there is enough evidence to believe a parole violation happened, the officer will schedule a parole revocation hearing.
- Adjustment/Mitigation Phase
- In this phase the parole officer is allowed to consider how the parolee has socially adjusted to reentry into society.
- Information may be presented by the parolee such as work history, substance abuse treatment, successful completion of programs or education, conditions of release and prior parole supervision violations.
- Allegation phase
- Oftentimes the Allegation and Adjustment phases may be merged into a single hearing.
- The Parole hearing officer will record all findings in the hearing and submit a report to a three-person voting panel through the Texas Board of Pardons and Parole. This three member voting panel will decide whether to continue, revoke or adjust a parolee’s status.
- The parolee has the right to a parole revocation hearing.
- The parolee has the right to hire an attorney to represent them.
- The parolee has the right to know the evidence being presented against them.
- The parolee has a right to subpoena witnesses to the hearing.
- The parolee has the right to cross examine witnesses, including the monitoring parole officer.
- A parolee may be returned to prison.
- A parolee may be continued on their parole.
- A parolee may have an adjustment to their parole status.
- Potential adjustments could include a transfer to an Intermediate Sanction Facility (ISF), Substance Abuse Felony Punishment Facility (SAFEP), treatment center or halfway house.
Representation is essential at this state. While limited, parolees have very important rights when it comes to a parole revocation. Without an attorney, oftentimes a parolee with sign away their rights to a live hearing to determine the status of their parole. By signing away these important rights, a parolee loses the opportunity to fight the allegations in front of a hearing examiner, or present any evidence to the parole board to support remaining on parole.