2018 Louisiana Laws
Revised Statutes
TITLE 15 - Criminal Procedure
RS 15:1199.24 - Post-Conviction Veterans Mentor Program for incarcerated veterans; eligibility criteria

§1199.24. Post-Conviction Veterans Mentor Program for incarcerated veterans; eligibility criteria

            A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, an offender who is incarcerated shall be eligible to participate in the Post-Conviction Veterans Mentor Program if all of the following conditions are met:

            (1) The offender satisfies the eligibility requirements of R.S. 13:5366 (Veterans Court Program).

            (2) The department has reason to believe that the offender could benefit from the Post-Conviction Veterans Mentor Program.

            (3) The offender is committed to the Department of Public Safety and Corrections for a term or terms of imprisonment with or without benefit of parole.

            (4) The offender has completed all programming deemed appropriate by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections.

            (5) The offender has not committed any major disciplinary offenses in twelve consecutive months prior to the transfer. A major disciplinary offense is an offense identified as a Schedule B offense by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections in the Disciplinary Rules and Procedures for Adult Offenders.

            (6) The offender has completed the mandatory minimum of one hundred hours of prerelease programming in accordance with the provisions of R.S. 15:827.1 if such programming is available at the facility where the offender is incarcerated.

            (7) The offender has obtained a GED credential, unless the offender has previously obtained a high school diploma or is deemed by a certified educator as being incapable of obtaining a GED.

            (8) The offender, at the time of consideration for the program, is not designated as "high risk" and is considered "low risk".

            (9) The offender is committed to the custody of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections.

            (10) The offender has attained forty years of age and has served at least ten years of the term or terms of imprisonment.

            B. An eligible offender shall then be subject to pre-screening by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections, office of adult services for placement in a transitional work program.

            C. If the offender is approved by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections, office of adult services they shall be transferred to an appropriate transitional work program. After three successful years in a transitional work program, the offender shall be granted a parole hearing, if not otherwise eligible for a hearing prior to such date.

            D. To maintain eligibility to participate in the program, the offender must comply with all of the following requirements:

            (1) Maintain parole eligibility pursuant to the provisions of R.S. 15:574.4.

            (2) Continue to participate in all programming deemed appropriate by the Department of Public Safety and Corrections and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

            (3) Meet once a month with an authorized veteran transition counselor.

            (4) Perform at least fifty hours of unpaid community service to any veteran or military program, including the Veterans Court probation program.

            (5) Offenders approved for placement in a transitional facility shall serve as mentors of the Veterans Court probation program if they receive a favorable recommendation as provided in R.S. 15:1199.25.

            E. Any violation of the conditions of eligibility provided for in Subsection D of this Section shall subject the veteran to disciplinary sanctions up to and including removal from the transitional work program. Any veteran removed from the program shall not be eligible for further consideration pursuant to this Part.

            F. After the successful completion of the assigned term at the transitional facility, the veteran shall be granted a hearing before the committee on parole. If the veteran is granted parole, then the veteran shall be released on parole or released on diminution of sentence. Any veteran whose parole is revoked shall not be eligible to participate in the program.

            Acts 2018, No. 273, §1.

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