2020 Code of Alabama
Title 15 - Criminal Procedure.
Chapter 22 - Pardons, Paroles, and Probation.
Article 2 - Pardons and Paroles.
Section 15-22-24 - Board of Pardons and Paroles - Duties Retirement of Parole Officers; Representation of Applicant by State Official; Supervision and Treatment; Training Requirements.

Universal Citation: AL Code § 15-22-24 (2020)

Section 15-22-24

Board of Pardons and Paroles - Duties retirement of parole officers; representation of applicant by state official; supervision and treatment; training requirements.

(a) The Board of Pardons and Paroles, hereinafter referred to as "the board," shall be charged with the duty of determining, through use of a validated risk and needs assessment as defined in Section 12-25-32, what prisoners serving sentences in the jails and prisons of the State of Alabama may be released on parole and when and under what conditions. Such board shall also be charged with the duty of supervising all prisoners released on parole from the jails or prisons of the state and of lending its assistance to the courts in the supervision of all prisoners placed on probation by courts exercising criminal jurisdiction and making such investigations as may be necessary in connection therewith, of implementing the use of validated risk and needs assessments as defined in Section 12-25-32 by probation and parole officers, of determining whether violation of parole or probation conditions exist in specific cases, deciding, in the case of parolees, what action should be taken with reference thereto, causing, in the case of probationers, reports of such investigations to be made to the judges of the courts having jurisdiction of the probationers and of aiding parolees and probationers to secure employment.

(b) Between October 1 and December 31 of each year, the board shall make a full report of its activities and functions during the preceding year, and such report shall be prepared in quadruplicate, with one copy thereof lodged with the Governor, one filed in the office of the Secretary of State, one filed in the office of the Department of Archives and History, and one copy retained in the permanent records of the board.

(c) The board may accept grants, devices, bequeaths [bequests] or gifts and make expenditures therefrom for the operations of the board and not individually as board members.

(d) The board shall have the power and authority to enter contracts to accomplish the objectives of the board.

(e) The board shall adopt policy and procedural guidelines for establishing parole consideration eligibility dockets based on its evaluation of a prisoner's prior record, nature and severity of the present offense, potential for future violence, and community attitude toward the offender to include input from the victim or victims, the family of the victim or victims, prosecutors, and law enforcement entities or other criteria established by the board pursuant to Section 15-22-37.

(f) Any person who, at the time of his retirement, is employed by the Board of Pardons and Paroles as a probation and parole officer, shall receive as part of his retirement benefits, without cost to him, his badge, and pistol.

(g) The board is hereby authorized and empowered to promulgate rules and regulations to establish a program that will authorize the board to expend state moneys not to exceed $250.00 per year for awarding recognition incentive awards for outstanding employees.

(h) No state official shall appear or otherwise represent an applicant before the board for any consideration or thing of value unless said official was counsel of record for the applicant during a trial or hearing in the regular judicial process that led to said applicant's present status; however, no state official shall be prohibited from appearing without consideration before the board or board panel on behalf of an applicant.

(i) The board shall have the power, authority, and jurisdiction to conditionally transfer a prisoner to the authorities of the federal government or any other jurisdiction entitled to his custody to answer pending charges or begin serving a sentence in response to a properly filed detainer from the other jurisdiction. Such conditionally transferred prisoner shall remain in the legal custody of the warden of the institution from which he was transferred. Should any such conditionally transferred prisoner satisfy all detainers against him prior to completion of his Alabama sentence, said prisoner shall not be released from custody without further order of the Board of Pardons and Paroles.

(j) The board and its agents shall have the power and authority to administer oaths and affirmation, examine witnesses and receive evidence on all matters to be considered by the board.

(k) The board shall develop and adopt guidelines and policies to ensure that any treatment programs or providers utilized by the board in the supervision of probationers and parolees implement evidence-based practices, as defined in Section 12-25-32, designed to reduce recidivism among such probationers and parolees and shall cooperate with the Office of the Governor in evaluating such programs and providers. The Office of the Governor shall ensure that treatment programs and providers that receive funding from the state or through court-ordered monies utilize such funding and monies for programs reasonably expected to reduce recidivism among probationers and parolees.

(l) The board shall develop and adopt guidelines and policies to ensure that the supervision and treatment of probationers and parolees shall be based on the individual probationer's or parolee's risk of reoffending, as determined through a validated risk and needs assessment as defined in Section 12-25-32, and that supervision and treatment resources of the board are prioritized to focus on those probationers and parolees with the highest risk of reoffending. The board shall include resources available to veterans and servicemen and shall annually coordinate with the Department of Veterans Affairs to ensure the most current benefits and services are identified and available. The board shall maximize case supervision practices such that no probation and parole officer is assigned more than 20 active high-risk cases at any one time. Supervision and treatment of probationers and parolees shall include the following:

(1) Use of a validated risk and needs assessment;

(2) Use of assessment results to guide the appropriate level of supervision responses consistent with the level of supervision and evidence-based practices used to reduce recidivism;

(3) Collateral and personal contacts with the probationer or parolee and community that may be unscheduled and that shall occur as often as needed based on the probationer's or parolee's supervision level, which, in turn, should be based on risk of reoffense as determined through a validated risk and needs assessment. Such contacts shall serve the purpose of keeping supervising officers informed of the probationer's or parolee's conduct, compliance with conditions, and progress in community-based intervention;

(4) Case planning for each probationer or parolee based on risk of reoffense and needs identified and prioritized based on associated risk; and

(5) Use of practical and suitable methods that are consistent with evidence-based practices to aid and encourage the probationer or parolee to improve his or her conduct and circumstances so as to reduce his or her level of risk.

(m) The board shall require all probation and parole officers employed on January 30, 2016, to complete the training requirements set forth in this subsection on or before January 1, 2017. All probation and parole officers hired after January 30, 2016, shall complete the training requirements set forth in this subsection within two years of their hire date. The training and professional development services shall include:

(1) Assessment techniques;

(2) Case planning;

(3) Risk reduction strategies;

(4) Effective communication skills;

(5) Behavioral health needs;

(6) Application of core correctional practices, including motivational interviewing, basic principles of cognitive therapy, structured skill building, problem solving, reinforcement and use of authority;

(7) Training for supervising officers to become training capacity in the state; and

(8) Other topics identified by the board as evidence-based practices as defined in Section 12-25-32.

(n) The board shall not have the power, authority, or jurisdiction to regulate or exercise authority over, or related to, the operation, management, regulations, policies, or procedures of any local confinement facility, including, but not limited to, county jails, community corrections programs, or drug courts.

(Acts 1939, No. 275, p. 426; Code 1940, T. 42, §5; Acts 1951, No. 599, p. 1030; Acts 1982, No. 82-153, §4; Act 2015-185, §3.)

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