The parole revocation process starts with an alleged violation. It can be a Technical Violation (Rule No. 1 Violation - Failure to Report, Rule No. 3 Violation - Changing Residence without Parole Officers Permission, etc.) or an Alleged New Offense (Rule No. 2 Violation - Theft, DWI, Assault, Possession of a Controlled Substance, etc.).
If there the Parole Officer believes a violation has occurred, he or she submits a request for issuance of a blue warrant (referred to as a blue warrant because the hard copy of the warrant is actually blue) to their supervisor who, if in agreement, submits the request for issuance of a blue warrant to The Board of Pardons and Parole in Austin. A blue warrant is issued.
If the Parole Officer and the Supervisor believe there exist extenuating circumstances which require a parolee to remain out of custody until the hearing, the Parole Officer can schedule what's called a 'Summons Hearing'. The parolee will be issued a summons to appear at revocation hearing at a scheduled time and date.
When a blue warrant is issued, the parolee will then be arrested the next time he or she reports or is stopped by a police officer. Once incarcerated the parolee will be visited by a Parole Officer who will ask them if they wish to waive their hearing (a hearing should almost never be waived, regardless of what the Parole Officer says!). Assuming the Parolee has taken this advice, he or she will be asked if they admit or deny the allegations and they will be given the time and date of the Revocation Hearing.
There is no bond available for a blue warrant, however, if compelling reasons exist, it is possible to get a blue warrant lifted once it has been issued.
You have a right to an attorney at the parole revocation hearing, but the state is only required to provide an attorney for representation under limited circumstances (mental illness, complicated nature of alleged new offense requires legal representation to ensure no unforeseen violations of constitutional rights occur).
A parolee is not afforded the same rights at his or her hearing that a criminal defendant is afforded at a criminal hearing. However, there are rights afforded the parolee that, if invoked properly at the hearing, could result in a 'no finding' of violation. And often times, does.
The charging instrument at a parole revocation hearing is called the '48'. It states the allegations of violation made against the parolee. If there is an unadjudicated Rule No. 2 violation there will be a Preliminary Hearing conducted to determine if probable cause exists to hold the parolee over to a revocation hearing. If the hearing officer determines that probable cause does not exist to believe that an offense has been committed, then a report will be sent to one of the six Texas Board of Pardons and Parole Panels which handles the cases for that region. A reviewer will look at the report and make an initial determination as to whether the Board should reopen the case to get more evidence or affirm the hearing officer's finding. If the Board affirms the finding then the blue warrant will be lifted and the parolee will be release back on parole. The process takes about 30 to 45 days to complete.
If the hearing officer finds that probable cause exists to believe a Rule No. 2 violation occurred then the case will be continued for a Revocation Hearing.
The Parole Revocation Hearing is divided into two parts. The Fact Finding phase and the Adjustment phase.
In the Fact Finding phase of the hearing. The Parole Officer presents evidence of the violations. The Parolee has the opportunity to cross-examine the Parole Officer and any other state's witness. The Parolee also has the opportunity to present evidence in this phase.
If the Hearing Officer determines that the State has proven it's case by a Preponderance of the Evidence, the hearing will proceed to the Adjustment Phase. During this phase the Parole Officer will present evidence and discuss how the Parolee has been doing while on Parole or Mandatory Supervision. The Parolee also has chance during this phase to cross-examine the Parole Officer and any state's witness as well as present any testimony of their own.
At this point the Hearing Officer will ask the Parole Officer for a recommendation. The Parole Officer can recommend:
1. Reinstate (with or without a recommendation for added conditions including electronic monitoring); 2.ISF (Intermediate Sanctioned Facility typically 60-120 days) or SAFP (Substance Abuse Felony Punishment); 3.Revoke.
The Hearing Officer will not give a recommendation at this time. He or she will review the evidence at a later time and then submit their report with a recommendation to the Board.
It usually takes 3 to 6 weeks for the Board to respond with their decision.
If it is a Summons Hearing and there is no finding, the parolee is free to leave. If at a Summons Hearing there is a finding that the parolee violated the conditions of parole, the Parole Officer may either let the parolee leave and wait for the Board's decision, or detain the parolee.
If you are facing parole revocation, you have the right to an attorney. You need someone on your side who knows the law and who has a history of success.
Joe Padian is a licensed attorney practicing throughout the State of Texas. He has successfully handled over 1000 Parole Revocation Hearings, Motions to Reopen and First Set Off Date Releases.
Let Joe Padian help you.
If you would like to contact Joe, please do so at one of the following:
Joseph J. Padian 1614 Market Center Blvd. Dallas, TX 75207