As a previous post discussed, there are opportunities for Mississippi defendants convicted of certain crimes to reduce the penalties associated with the crime they were convicted of. A parole hearing opens up the possibility for early release, helping him or her reenter society, obtain employment and interact with their friends, family and community once again. While there are many benefits to obtaining parole, it is important to note that getting a parole hearing is not always easy and neither is obtaining a favorable decision.
A parole hearing is when an inmate has a hearing to determine whether or not he or she should be released from prison, to a parole supervisor, so he or she can reenter society for the duration of their sentence. A Hearing Examiner conducts the parole hearing; a commissioner makes the decision as to whether parole is granted after reviewing the hearing record that was created by the Hearing Examiner.
A parole hearing is not available to any prison inmate. Depending on the terms of an inmates sentence, only those eligible for parole consideration will be issued a parole hearing. In most cases, eligibility does not occur until an inmate has served a minimum term of incarceration. In some cases, inmates are able to receive a hearing prior to reaching his or her parole eligibility date; however, no inmate will be released prior to reaching this date.
It should be noted that just because an inmate was granted a parole hearing does not mean that the inmate will be released on parole. For some, parole hearing come every two years and it takes several hearings before parole is granted. Depending on the situation and the information shared or discussed during a parole hearing, some inmates may not be deemed ready for parole.
No matter your situation or if it is you first parole hearing or not, it is important to prepare yourself for the hearing. This means understanding the process, what might be asked and what rights you have. Seeking legal guidance could help ensure your rights and interests are protected throughout this process.
Source: Justice.gov, "Parole Hearings," accessed Sept. 24, 2017