2020 Code of Alabama
Title 15 - Criminal Procedure.
Chapter 22 - Pardons, Paroles, and Probation.
Article 2 - Pardons and Paroles.
Section 15-22-32 - Parole Court; Hearing Officers; Sanctions; Delegation of Authority.

Universal Citation: AL Code § 15-22-32 (2020)

Section 15-22-32

Parole court; hearing officers; sanctions; delegation of authority.

(a) Whenever there is reasonable cause to believe that a prisoner who has been paroled has violated his or her parole, the Board of Pardons and Paroles, at its next meeting, may declare the prisoner to be delinquent, and time owed shall date from the delinquency. The Department of Corrections, after receiving notice from the sheriff of the county jail where the state prisoner is being held, shall promptly notify the board of the return of a paroled prisoner charged with violation of his or her parole. Thereupon, the board, a single member of the board, a parole revocation hearing officer, or a designated parole officer shall hold a parole court at the prison or at another place as it may determine within 20 business days and consider the case of the parole violator, who shall be given an opportunity to appear personally or by counsel before the board or the parole court and produce witnesses and explain the charges made against him or her. The board member, parole revocation hearing officer, or a designated parole officer, acting as a parole court, shall determine whether sufficient evidence supports the violation charges. If a hearing is not held within the specified 20 business days, the parolee shall be released back to parole supervision.

(b) Upon finding sufficient evidence to support a parole violation, the parole court may recommend to the board revocation or reinstatement of parole, and the board may revoke or reinstate parole. Upon revocation of parole, the board may require the prisoner to serve in a state prison facility the balance of the term for which he or she was originally sentenced or any portion thereof, calculated from the date of delinquency. The delinquent parolee shall be deemed to begin serving the balance of the prison time required on the date of his or her rearrest as a delinquent parolee. However, in all cases, excluding violent offenses defined pursuant to Section 12-25-32 and classified as a Class A felony, and sex offenses, defined pursuant to Section 15-20A-5, the parole court may only recommend revocation and the board may only revoke parole as provided below:

(1) Unless the underlying offense is a violent offense as defined in Section 12-25-32 and classified as a Class A felony, when a parolee under supervision of the Board of Pardons and Paroles has violated a condition of parole, other than being arrested or convicted of a new offense or absconding, the parole court may recommend and the board may impose a period of confinement of no more than 45 consecutive days to be served in the custody population of the Department of Corrections. By April 29, 2016, the Department of Corrections shall develop and implement a streamlined process to transport and receive the parolee into its custody population and shall identify and, if possible, implement policies aimed at reducing the administrative delays, if any, in transferring to the Department of Corrections the physical custody of the parolee and those whose parole has been revoked. Such process shall be developed in cooperation with the Alabama Sheriffs' Association and the Association of County Commissions of Alabama. Such process shall include the most cost-effective method to process sanctioned parole violators for the maximum 45 day confinement period and shall provide that the Department of Corrections shall reimburse the state mileage rate, as determined by the Alabama Comptroller's Office, to the county for any state inmate sanctioned as a parole violator and transferred to or from a Department of Corrections facility by the county. Upon completion of the confinement period and release from confinement, the parolee shall automatically continue on parole for the remaining term of the sentence without further action from the board. The parole court shall not recommend and the board shall not revoke parole unless the parolee has previously received a total of three periods of confinement under this subsection. A parolee shall receive only three total periods of confinement under this subsection. The maximum 45 day term of confinement ordered under this subsection shall not be reduced by credit for incarceration time already served in the case. Confinement under this subsection shall be credited to the balance of the incarceration term for which the parolee was originally sentenced. In the event the time remaining on parole supervision is 45 days or less, the term of confinement shall be for the remainder of the parolee's sentence.

(2) The total time spent in confinement under this subsection shall not exceed the term of the parolee's original sentence.

(3) Confinement shall be immediate. The board shall be responsible for ensuring that the Department of Corrections receives necessary documentation for imposing a period of confinement within five business days of the board's action.

(4) If the parolee is presented to a county jail for any period of confinement as contemplated hereinabove with a serious medical condition, the admittance of the parolee would create a security risk to the county jail, or if the jail is near, at, or over capacity, the sheriff may refuse to admit the parolee. If while in custody of the county jail the parolee develops a serious medical condition, the presence of the parolee creates a security risk to the county jail, or the county jail reaches near, at, or over capacity, the sheriff may release the parolee upon notification to the parole officer. A sheriff and his or her staff shall be immune from liability for exercising discretion pursuant to Section 36-1-12 in refusing to admit a parolee into the jail or releasing a parolee from jail under the circumstances described above.

(c) The position of Parole Revocation Hearing Officer is created and established, subject to provisions of the state Merit System.

(d) The board may appoint or employ, as the board deems necessary, hearing officers who shall conduct a parole court. Such hearing officers shall have authority to determine the sufficiency of evidence to support parole violation charges and recommend to the board revocation of parole pursuant to subsection (b) or reinstatement of parole.

(e) In lieu of the provisions of subsections (a) and (b), when a parolee violates his or her parole terms and conditions, his or her parole officer may require the parolee to submit to behavioral treatment, substance abuse treatment, GPS monitoring, such other treatment as determined by the board or supervising officer, or a period of confinement in a consenting jail facility as specified in subdivision (6) of subsection (b) of Section 15-22-29. The parole officer may exercise such authority after administrative review and approval by the officer's supervisor.

(f) Prior to imposing a sanction provided under subsection (e) and pursuant to subdivision (6) of subsection (b) of Section 15-22-29, the parolee must first be presented with a violation report, putting forth the alleged parole violations and supporting evidence. The parolee may request a hearing before the parole court to be heard in person within 10 days. The parolee shall be given notice of the right to seek such parole court review and advised of the right (i) to a hearing before a neutral and detached parole court on the alleged violation or violations, with the right to present relevant witnesses and documentary evidence; (ii) to retain and have counsel at the hearing if he or she so desires; and (iii) to confront and cross examine any adverse witnesses. Upon the signing of a waiver of these rights by the parolee and the supervising parole officer, with approval of a supervisor, the parolee may be treated, monitored, or confined for the period recommended in the violation report and designated on the waiver. However, the parolee shall have no right of review if he or she has signed a written waiver of rights as provided in this subsection.

(g) The board shall adopt guidelines and procedures to implement the requirements of this section, which shall include the requirement of a supervisor's approval prior to exercise of the delegation of authority authorized by subsection (e).

Acts 1939, No. 275, p. 426, §12; Code 1940, T. 42, §12; Acts 1951, No. 599, p. 1030, §12; Acts 1975, No. 184, §1; Acts 1981, 3rd Ex. Sess., No. 81-1121, p. 385, §1; Act 99-400, p. 667, §1; Act 2015-185, §3.)

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