In Louisiana, probation and parole allow offenders to live in their communities while under the supervision of a probation or parole officer, respectively. Parole allows someone who served time in prison to transition back into the community with supervision, and probation allows an offender to serve the remainder of their time outside of jail.
Both parolees and probationers must follow specific rules required by the court and their supervising officers. If they violate these requirements, they risk revocation of probation or parole and spending time behind bars.
Probation and Parole Under Louisiana Law
Parole is the conditional release from prison as the result of a parole board's action. Parole will not occur until the board holds a public hearing regarding the inmate's incarceration.
When the board approves parole, the inmate serves the remainder of their sentence under the supervision of a parole officer, who monitors that inmate until the completion of their term. If the inmate does not follow the rules of parole, they will return to prison.
Probation allows for the suspension of an offender's jail sentence and enables that person to remain in their community while under the supervision of a probation officer. An offender can serve some of their prison sentence and then go on a period of probation, or go on probation instead of doing any time behind bars. If an inmate doesn't follow the rules of their probation, they, too, risk jail time.
Conditions of Parole Supervision in Louisiana
After their release from incarceration, parolees must report to the Probation and Parole Office at the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections within 48 hours. They must submit a report to their parole officer by the fifth day of each month until completion of their supervision and report to their parole officer as required.
They must live at the address on the certificate issued to them by the parole officer; if they need to move, they must have their parole officer's permission to do so. They cannot leave the state of Louisiana without permission and must waive extradition if found outside of the state by law enforcement.
Parole also requires that the parolee:
- Not engage in criminal activities or associate with those involved in criminal activities.
- Avoid bars and casinos.
- Refrain from the illegal use of alcohol and drugs.
- Not possess or control any dangerous weapons, including firearms.
- Work at a parole-officer-approved job. If they become unemployed, they must immediately tell their officer.
- Submit to mental health, medical, substance abuse treatment, exams and tests when ordered by a parole officer.
- Allow their parole officer to visit their home or place of employment anytime.
- Pay the supervision fees set by Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections by the first day of each month.
Louisiana Conditions of Probation
Individuals on probation also have a list of requirements, some of which are similar to those of parolees. A person on probation must:
- Create a report that is full and truthful at the end of every month for their probation officer.
- Meet family responsibilities as specified by the court, including those that involve child support.
- Report to their probation officer as required.
- Allow the probation officer to visit them at home or anywhere else.
- Devote themselves to employment or an occupation approved by the probation officer.
- Not own or possess dangerous weapons, including firearms.
- Per the court, make reasonable restitution or reparations to whomever they caused damage or loss.
- Avoid disreputable places and persons.
A person on probation must remain within the court's jurisdiction and get their probation officer's permission before changing their address or employment. They may perform community service work as part of their probation sentence.
When ordered by their probation officer, they must submit to mental health, medical, substance abuse treatment programs, exams and tests. They must also allow their probation officer to visit their home or place of employment anytime and agree to personal, property, home and vehicle searches if there is reasonable suspicion that they have been involved in criminal activity.
Michelle Nati is an associate editor and writer who has reported on legal, criminal and government news for PasadenaNow.com and Complex Media. She holds a B.A. in Communications and English from Niagara University.