Charged, convicted, and sentenced. You have served part of your prison time and you are scheduled for a parole hearing. Having the assistance of an aggressive, experienced lawyer can make a real difference.
Clemency may be an option. The clemency process is unique and requires the personal decision of the governor to grant relief.
Your lawyer at Gorman Malarcik Pierce will help you determine which approach is best for your situation, and will lead you through the process. We have helped many of our clients obtain parole and apply for clemency, and we will put our experience to work for you.
The process for parole is different than Judicial Release. In Ohio, the parole process is handled by the Ohio Parole Board. Specific guidelines determine eligibility for parole, usually after an inmate has served the minimum time set out in the original sentence. The Parole Board is required to consider a list of factors to determine whether a prisoner should be paroled.
Once the parole hearing is scheduled, the correctional institution prepares a report describing the inmate’s activities while in prison, including any rehabilitation, education, and discipline. The report will be reviewed by the Parole Board. The inmate’s lawyer may also send written materials to the Board, addressing the factors the Board will consider, and arguing for the prisoner’s release.
Other interested parties will be notified of the hearing, such as victims, and the prosecutor who handled the original case. They may present information to the Parole Board. The inmate’s family may present information to the Parole Board at an Offender Conference, or in writing. An inmate’s lawyer may also speak at the Offender Conference.
Very often, prisoners appear at the Parole Board hearing only by video conference. They are not allowed to have a lawyer present at the hearing, but their lawyer may help them prepare for it.
If parole is granted, the Parole Board will determine a release date and the terms of parole. If it is denied, the Parole Board will set the next review date. If the Board denies parole, a Request for Reconsideration may be filed, asking the Board to set aside the previous decision and re-hear the case.
In some cases, Ohio law allows a challenge to an inmate’s release. Challenges might be made by prosecutors or victims and their families. In such cases, the Parole Board may conduct an Open Hearing. At an Open Hearing, presentations will be made arguing against parole. The inmate may have his or her own lawyer make arguments in favor of release, disputing the arguments made opposing parole.
“Clemency” includes two kinds of relief: pardon and commutation. Both require the governor to personally consider the request and either grant it or deny it.
The governor has the power to commute a sentence, which means that he can change it. He can order immediate release of a prisoner, or change the terms of parole. A pardon means that the prisoner is cleared of legal guilt: he or she no longer has a conviction.
Clemency requests are filed with the Parole Board. The Parole Board will conduct a hearing, much like a parole hearing. The inmate’s lawyer may provide information to the Parole Board in support of the application for clemency. The Board will then make a recommendation to the governor. The governor’s legal counsel will conduct its own independent review, and submit the Parole Board’s recommendation and its own information to the governor. The governor may either grant or deny the application for clemency.
When you finally have the opportunity for parole, you want to be successful. If your parole is denied, it could be years before you have another chance. By having an aggressive and experienced lawyer working for you, you improve your chances of returning to your family and putting your prison experience behind you.
The lawyers at Gorman Malarcik Pierce use our combined experience and skills to obtain parole for many of our clients. We know the process and the law.
Being convicted of a crime is a serious matter: it affects your future employment, your family life, your finances, and your freedom. Parole and Clemency will help you reunite with your family and rebuild your life.
The process is intimidating and the stakes are high. The sooner you have a criminal defense lawyer working for you, the more likely you will have a good result.
Call us today: (330) 253-0785.
Our offices are located in downtown Akron, at 54 East Mill Street. We serve clients in courts throughout Northeast Ohio, including Cleveland, Akron, Canton, Youngstown, and the surrounding areas.