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Chapter 11. The History of Parole: From Its Origin to the Present. Introduction.

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chapter 11

Chapter 11

The History of Parole: From Its Origin to the Present

  • Of the hundreds of thousands of prisoners who reenter the community every year, one out of five is an unconditional release, that is, they receive no supervision whatsoever after they leave prison because they have served their full sentence behind bars.

LO: 5

introduction con t
Introduction, Con’t.
  • Paroleis theconditional release of a convicted offender from a correctional institution, under the continued custody of the state, to serve the remainder of his or her sentence in the community under supervision.
  • Historically, parole referred only to discretionary release. But as laws and release methods changed, “parolees” became a more general concept that has incorporated mandatory supervision. LO: 5
release types
Release Types
  • A mandatory release enters the community automatically at the expiration of the maximum term minus credited time off for good behavior. Mandatory release is decided by legislative statute or good-time laws.
  • A discretionary release is determined by members of a parole board who decide that a prisoner has earned the privilege of release while remaining under supervision in the community.LO: 5
the origins of parole
The Origins of Parole
  • Parole is derived from the French parole d’honneur, meaning “word of honor.”
  • Parole originated almost simultaneously in Europe with:
    • Manuel Montesinos, a Spaniard, in 1835
    • Georg Michael Obermaier, a German, in 1842
    • Alexander Maconochie, an Englishman, in 1837LO: 1
  • A 1597 English law provided for the transportation of English prisoners to America.
  • The king granted reprieves and stays of execution-pardons-to convicted felons who could be put to work in the colonies.
  • Upon arrival in the colonies, the services of the prisoner were sold to the highest bidder, resulting in indentured servitude . LO: 1
marks system
Marks System
  • The Revolutionary War ended the transportation of criminals to America and resulted in same practice to Australia in 1788.
  • In 1811, the ticket of leave was adopted to shorten the sentence.
  • The Marks System was proposed by Alexander Maconochie in 1837.
  • The Norfolk Island penal colony was transformed by Maconochie using the Marks System as superintendent in 1840.

LO: 2

the irish system
The Irish System
  • The Irish System was modeled after Norfolk Island by Sir Walter Crofton in 1854, based on:
    • Strict imprisonment
    • Indeterminate sentence
    • Ticket-of-leave
  • Prisoners released under the Irish System were supervised by police in rural areas and an inspector in Dublin.

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development of parole in the u s
Development of Parole in the U.S.
  • Parole was first tried in the U.S. at the New York Elmira Reformatory in 1876.
  • Four concepts justified parole in the U.S.:
    • Reduction in the length of incarceration as a reward for good conduct
    • Supervision of the parolee
    • Imposition of the indeterminate sentence
    • Reduction in the rising cost of incarceration

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medical model
Medical Model
  • The Medical Model, based on rehabilitation, was the primary philosophy from 1930-1960.
  • A philosophical change occurred in the 1970s as individualism, rehabilitation, sentence indeterminacy and parole all fell from favor. LO: 4
justice model
Justice Model
  • The medical model and indeterminate sentencing were replaced by the justice model and determinate sentencing because of:
    • Steadily increasing crime rates
    • The perceived failure of rehabilitation programs
    • The perception that parole boards were incapable of making predictive judgments about offenders’ future behavior

LO: 4

just desserts
Just Desserts
  • In contrast to the rehabilitative idea, the just desserts or justice model changed the focus from the offender to the offense.
  • Embraced determinate sentencing and the abolition of parole
  • The indeterminate sentence was too vague and without due process protections to limit discretion. The just deserts approach was perceived as providing fair punishment. LO: 4
from discretionary parole to mandatory release
From Discretionary Parole to Mandatory Release
  • In 1977, nearly 90% of prisoners were released by a parole board.
  • As of 2001, 15 states had abolished parole and another 5 abolished discretionary release for violent offenses.
  • Because of the trend toward determinate sentencing and abolishing discretionary release, only about 24 to 39% of prisoners are released via discretionary release, whereas mandatory release numbers have increased.

LO: 4

functions of parole
Functions of Parole
  • Parole is tasked primarily with protecting the public from released offenders. This goal is accomplished in 3 general objectives:
    • Enforcing restrictions and controls on parolees in the community
    • Providing services that help parolees integrate into a noncriminal lifestyle
    • Increasing the public’s level of confidence in the effectiveness and responsiveness of parole services through the first 2 activities LO: 4
parole today characteristics
Parole Today/Characteristics
  • In 2007, 825,300 were on parole – number paroled in almost every state was higher than in 2004.
  • Generally, the Southern region had the highest incarceration rates, yet the lowest parole rates. The northeast region had the opposite situation—a higher rate of parole and a lower rate of incarceration per 100,000 residents.
  • Parole success rates have remained unchanged, with less than ½ of all parolees able to successfully complete their parole.

LO: 4

population medical issues
Population & Medical Issues
  • Parole boards have functioned in some states as the “back door” of America’s prisons.
  • Medical parole, or compassionate release, is the conditional release of prisoners with a terminal illness.
  • The optimal solution regarding the indeterminacy of sentencing and the proper role of parole has not yet appeared, and as the economy varies, so will the accompanying budgets and the public debate. LO: 4