What Happens When Your Parole Is Revoked in Texas?
- January 18, 2021
- Parole, Parole Violation & Revocation Defense
- The Law Office of Greg Tsioros
- Comments Off on What Happens When Your Parole Is Revoked in Texas?
If you have violated a condition of your parole, you can end up being sent back to prison and made to serve the rest of your original sentence. This is known as parole revocation and can be devastating if you have put work into trying to rebuild a life for yourself outside of prison. However, an experienced attorney can help you make sure that you receive the proper procedures are followed during the parole revocation process.
Conditions of Parole
After you have reached the minimum amount of prison time that you need to serve as part of your sentence, you may be granted parole. While most prisoners are very excited to be granted their freedom, it is important to remember that parole comes with certain conditions.
General rules that apply to most people being paroled include:
- You must obey all federal, state, and local laws.
- Courts must be informed of any change of address.
- Employment must be maintained.
- Courts must be notified if you change jobs.
- You must remain constant with any court-appointed costs.
- You cannot own a gun or other weapon.
Additional Guidelines for Parole in Texas
The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles may require additional terms to your parole. These terms depend upon your initial conviction and your behavior while you were serving your sentence. Typical additional terms may include:
- Drug treatment
- Educational services
- Community volunteering
- Monitoring through electronic devices
Guidelines for Parole for Convicted Sex Offenders
If you were convicted of committing a sex crime, you may face even more restrictions upon your parole. You may be prevented from using the Internet, and you will be required to use the sex offender registry. You may also be prevented from entering child safety zones.
Parole Violations in Texas
Parole violations are typically grouped into two categories: law violations and administration violations. Due to the complex requirements of most parole terms, it is common for there to be multiple violations of each type.
When you violate federal, state, or local laws while on probation, you have violated the terms of your parole. If you have been accused of committing a new crime during your parole period, the hearing to determine whether or not your parole will be revoked may not occur until after the new charge has been settled through trial, plea bargain, or dismissal.
If your parole terms require you to pass periodic drug tests and you fail one, this is considered a violation of the law. The failed drug test is proof that you have broken the law and can be used to revoke your parole.
An administrative violation occurs when you fail to appear for a meeting, fail to pay a fine or fail to report an address change. Administrative violations may not seem as serious as violations of the law. But these violations are taken seriously and can result in your parole being revoked.
What Happens When You Violate the Terms of Your Parole?
When you are accused of violating your parole, you may start to panic due to the serious effect a parole violation can have on your future. While it is true that parole violations can send you back to prison, parole revocation cannot happen immediately. In the state of Texas, you are entitled to due process before your parole can be revoked.
Hearings for Parole Violation and Revocation
If you are accused of violating your parole, you will first have a preliminary hearing. During this hearing, evidence and witnesses will be offered as proof that you violated your parole. You may answer questions and make statements during this time, as well. If you have an experienced attorney, they will be permitted to cross-examine any witnesses, and evidence of your innocence may be presented during the preliminary hearing.
The preliminary hearing is heard by a hearing officer, not a judge. After the hearing is over, the officer will submit their findings to the parole board, and the parole board will decide whether to continue with a parole revocation hearing. This hearing will decide whether your parole will be revoked or not.
Due Process During Revocation Hearings
Your right to due process during your revocation hearings is protected by both the U.S. Supreme Court and Texas State law. Your due process includes the following:
- You must have written notice of the alleged violations.
- Evidence against you must be disclosed.
- You must be given the choice to provide witnesses and evidence in your defense.
- You have the right to have cross-examinations of witnesses alleging you violated your parole.
- The board must provide a written statement that lists its reason for parole revocation.
Consequences for Violating Parole
If the board finds that you have violated the terms of your parole, a number of consequences may await you. You might have your parole revoked. You may also face arrest warrants, fines, criminal charges, and increased parole terms.
How Parole Can Be Restored
Just because you are found guilty of violating parole does not mean your parole will be immediately revoked. The revocation hearing will take into account a number of factors, including your previous record on parole, how serious the violation was, how violent your original conviction was, health concerns, and the types of ties you have to your community. If you can demonstrate that you are a productive member of the community and your parole violation was not a common occurrence of an irresponsible person, you may have your parole restored.
Seeking Legal Counsel
Although you have a parole officer, it is recommended that you seek the services of an experienced defense attorney. Having an experienced attorney can guarantee that you receive the due process that you are entitled to, and an attorney can help present a case for your parole to be restored more effectively than you will be able to do on your own.