If you or someone you know is soon eligible for parole, then there are a few tips you should know to prepare you for this parole process. The first thing is to make sure you have an experienced attorney representing you throughout your parole hearings. The Kentucky Parole board gives you the opportunity to plead your case once you have served the minimum required of your sentence, but again its an opportunity, not a guarantee. You will need an experienced attorney that will be able to craft a good and convincing argument on your behalf that will sway the board to grant your parole with as little conditions, if any, as possible.
The Parole Board will be the group of persons that will hear your arguments, or any statements made on your behalf regarding your early or conditional release. Parole does not guarantee complete freedom, that depends on the circumstances surrounding your parole and the nature of your offense. For example, A child sex offender may get early release, but it will be conditioned upon a him being placed on the sex offender registry, not being able to live within a certain distance from schools or parks, notifying the registry whenever he/she moves. Again, having an experienced parole attorney is important because they will be able to better argue on your behalf to mitigate the nature or number of conditions that may be attached to your release.
You must also understand that Parole is not a right, but a privilege. It can never be a guaranteed thing and should be taken seriously. The board will take in to account numerous factors when determining your case, such as criminal history, conduct and achievements while time was being served, and maybe most importantly the offender’s plan upon release. Having a plan of what you are going to do upon release will show the board that you are ready to take the steps towards being acclimated back into society.
If you are denied parole, you do have a chance to have that decision changed by requesting an appellate review. The request must be in writing and submitted to the review board no later than twenty-one (21) days after the final disposition is made upon the offender. (Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. 439.340). This process, is also not a guarantee. The board may only grant a review for a limited number of reasons.
- If there is an allegation of misconduct by a board member
- If there is a significant procedural error made by a board member
- If there is significant new evidence in your case that was not available at the initial hearing.
If you plan to appeal a parole board decision be sure that you are well equipped for what may happen next. There will be a significant burden placed on you to prove that you deserve an appellate review of your case. Make sure that you have an experienced attorney present with you during this process to ensure that you have all the documentation that will be needed for this step such as the criminal defense lawyer locals turn to.