The parole hearing may be your one chance to seek release from prison. It is critical that you are fully prepared for this important meeting, and that you are represented by an attorney who understands the nuances of this process.

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• Capital Murder
• DWI
• White Collar Crimes
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Parnham and Associates

440 Louisiana St. Suite 200
(The Lyric Centre)
Houston, TX 770021
Phone: 713.224.3967
Fax: 713.224.2815

Parnham & Associates offers multi-lingual staff: we speak English, French and Spanish.

Texas Pardon & Parole Attorneys

Parnham & Associates

Attorneys at Law

The parole process can be confusing and frustrating. If you are eligible for state or federal parole, we can help you.

Texas Parole Violations

Individuals released from Texas prisons often face a period of supervision by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, referred to as parole.
Unlike probation, no Texas District Court is involved in this process. Parole and parole revocations are decided by an administration based on rules promulgated by the department.

Parole is usually conditioned on the successful completion of certain programs. In addition, a parolee is required to avoid drugs and stay away from individuals of ill repute. Any criminal charges will likely result in a revocation, especially any felony or violent crime. If you have been served with a parole revocation warrant in Texas, it may mean automatic arrest and incarceration. It is important to carefully consider your legal options if you are faced with this situation. Our attorneys can help you explore your legal options, whether you have been charged with a new crime or if you are accused of a technical violation.
Some of the most common violations of terms and conditions that prompt a parole revocation hearing in Texas include:

  • Failing to Maintain Employment or Keep a Job
  • Not Keeping in Touch with Parole Officer
  • Moving without Notifying PO of New Address
  • Not Continuing Education Started in Incarceration
  • Unlawful Possession of a Firearm or Other Prohibited Weapon
  • Having Drugs or a Controlled Substance in UI, Blood Test or in Possession
  • Speaking with Other Individuals on Parole
  • Failing to Appear for Random Drug Testing When Asked to Appear

Parole terms and conditions may also require the parolee to submit to regular drug testing, warrantless search and seizure, or searches performed without probable cause. Along with these typical requirements, the parolee is subject to specific requirements in Texas. For instance, if he or she was convicted or an alcohol-related offense, the terms of parole may include refraining from drinking alcoholic beverages.
If the parole officer assigned to you believes you violated the conditions of parole, he or she may issue a blue warrant for your arrest. At that time, you'll be transported to county jail and asked if you waive your rights, or if you wish to have a parole revocation hearing.

If You are Accused of Violating Parole:
 

Before a parole violation is addressed, it has to be determined whether it was a substantive or a technical violation. Technical violations include such things as missing appointments or classes which is different from a substantive violation such as committing a criminal offense. Once you have a parole violation on your record, it could be almost impossible to be paroled again. Before waiving your rights, it is advisable that you contact an experienced parole violation lawyer to argue your case.

Under Texas law, before the parolee is returned to jail or prison or subjected to additional consequences resulting from the parole violation, he or she has the right to legal due process. This means you have the right to a hearing, hear evidence presented against you, and the right to defend yourself. You have to right to do your best to convince members of the parole board that you didn't commit a violation or that the violation isn't as serious as presented.
It is important to request a parole revocation hearing; once a parole violation is entered onto your record getting parole will be much more difficult if you're eligible again.

A parole revocation hearing will usually be attended by the parole officer and a hearing officer who conducts the hearing. The parolee's attorney is also present. If there are witnesses requested by either the defendant parolee or his or her parole officer, they will also attend the hearing. Evidence will be presented at the hearing to establish the jurisdiction over the individual accused of parole violation, the hearing officer will review each alleged violation of parole and the parolee will be provided the opportunity to deny or admit any parole violation.

The parolee, or the parolee's attorney, will then have the opportunity to present his or her side of the story after the violations are read. The hearing officer takes the parole officer's evidence which may include documentary evidence such as a violation report describing the alleged violation of parole, witnesses, or videos. The parolee or their attorney may object to evidence as it is presented and may cross-examine any testimony, witness, or evidence placed against them.
The parolee may then testify and/or present evidence (e.g. testimony, affidavits, pictures, letters, or witnesses) in his or her favor; however, the burden of proof is on the parole officer. Once the evidence is presented from both sides, the hearing officer considers the facts and makes a finding. A single violation of parole can result in returning the violator to jail or prison.

  • If the hearing officer finds the hearing officer didn't meet the burden of proof, he or she enters a "no finding of a preponderance of credible evidence." This finding is like a not guilty verdict in a criminal case. At that point, the hearing officer recommends that parole should not be revoked.
  • If the hearing officer finds that credible evidence shows the parolee violated one or more conditions of parole, the hearing proceeds to the adjustment phase. At that point, both sides present evidence concerning the parolee's performance and compliance to date.
  • The parole officer presents an "adjustment statement" to recap the parolee's performance to date. The statement includes the parolee's criminal history evidence; how he or she is doing on the payment of restitution, fines, or fees he or she owes; the parolee's home environment and situation (and his or her verified residential address); indications or evidence or drug/alcohol use; and the parolee's compliance with "special conditions," if any. If the parolee is eligible for continued supervision and release, the report will state whether he or she is a candidate for electronic monitoring or if he or she is eligible for inclusion in an Intermediate Sanction Facility (ISF).
  • The parolee, or his or her attorney, may then question the parole officer about any other evidence presented.

Upon conclusion of the adjustment phase, the hearing officer requests the parole officer's recommendations and closes the hearing. All evidence presented, plus the hearing officer's notes and recommendations, are forwarded to the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles. The parole board then votes to determine the parolee's next steps. It may take two to three weeks for the parole board to arrive at a decision. The parolee is then advised about the conclusion and why the board reached it. If the parole board moves to revoke parole, the parolee has 60 days from the decision date to ask for a reopening of the hearing.

 
You may be facing imprisonment again if you are convicted of another crime or technical violation. Every parolee has the right to a hearing, and some alleged parole violators have the right to both a preliminary hearing and a revocation hearing; based on the findings the board may revoke parole, require additional supervision, reverse a previous revocation, or take any number of other actions. In each of these hearings, the parolee has the right to counsel.
The attorneys at Parnham & Associates are highly experienced in these cases and practice in both state and federal courts.
If you have been accused of a crime, please contact us today for a free consultation with an aggressive and resourceful criminal defense attorney. We will work tirelessly to ensure the best possible outcome for your case.
Call (713) 224 - 3967 for a free consultation.
 

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