We realize that the public often has questions regarding the parole and clemency processes. Below is a list of general questions pertaining to parole, revocation, victim input, and clemency. By no means is this an exhaustive list. Should you have further questions, contact our office.
Q: What is the difference between Probation and Parole?
A: Probation is an act of the court, not of the Parole Board. Probation instead of imprisonment may be ordered by a court for all or part of a person’s sentence. Probation is not parole. Parole may be granted only by the Parole Board after a person has served part of their sentence in prison.
Q: What is Discretionary Parole?
A: Inmates who, on or after January 1, 1994, commit any Homicide, Sexual Assault in the First Degree, Sexual Assault in the Second Degree, Battery in the First Degree, Domestic Battery in the First Degree, class Y Kidnapping, class Y Rape, Aggravated Robbery, Causing a Catastrophe, Engaging in a Continuing Criminal Enterprise, and Simultaneous Possession of Drugs and Firearms are eligible for discretionary parole.
For more information refer to the Board Manual.
Q: How do I apply for parole?
A: There is no application for parole. Eligibility dates are automatically computed by the Arkansas Department of Correction based on the crime of conviction, date of conviction, and the length of the sentence. An Institutional Release Officer (IRO) will schedule you four months prior to your eligibility date to go before the Parole Board.
Q: If my parole is denied, can I reapply? If so when?
A: Yes, you can immediately apply for reconsideration. A prior denial will not prejudice the Parole Board in any way.
Q: Can you tell me when someone is getting out?
A: No, we cannot provide this information. Release dates can change due to many variables, such as stipulations, parole plans, class changes and detainers.
Q: Is the Parole Board responsible for the supervision of parolees?
A: No. Once an inmate is paroled they are transferred to the custody of the Arkansas Department of Community Correction. They are assigned to a Parole Probation Officer (PPO) whose job it is to ensure that all conditions of parole are followed.
Q: Can a person be returned to prison while on parole?
A: Yes. If a parolee is convicted of a new offense or violates any condition of their parole, the Parole Board can have his or her parole revoked and have the offender returned to prison.
Q: Who is a Victim?
A: A Crime Victim is defined by statute as a victim of a sex offense, an offense against a minor, or a victim of violent crime.
Q: What steps do I need to take to speak against the parole of an inmate whose hearing is coming up?
A: Contact our office (501) 682-3850 and we will work with you on scheduling a hearing. Have the inmate’s name & ADC number available when you call.
Q: To whom and what address/agency should I write to express my desire for a person not receiving parole?
A: All statements, including the inmate’s Name & ADC#, should be sent to the Arkansas Parole Board:
Arkansas Parole Board
1302 Pike Avenue
North Little Rock, AR 72114
Q: Who will be hearing the Victim Input Statement?
A: The full Parole Board and any staff deemed necessary by the Board will be present. Inmates will never be present at a Victim Input Hearing.
Q: When will the results of the parole hearing be available?
A: The Board will give the victim a card after the victim input hearing with the date the results will be available.
Q: Why is he/she scheduled for a revocation hearing?
A: When any offender is released on parole, he/she agrees to abide by a set of rules and/or special conditions. If the offender fails to comply with any of the set rules and/or special conditions, it is grounds for a revocation hearing.
Q: Are the revocation hearings open to the public?
A: Yes. However, it is up to the parolee to let his/her parole officer know what witnesses are to testify on his/her behalf at the revocation hearing. In addition, all potential witnesses must possess relevant testimony to the proceedings.
Q: Do I have the right to an attorney during a revocation hearing?
A: There is no absolute right to an attorney in these proceedings. A parolee may hire at his/her expense an attorney to represent them at these hearings. A parolee may file a motion for appointment of counsel with the Hearing Examiner. In limited circumstances, an attorney may be appointed for these hearings.
Q: If my parole is revoked, how long will I be sent back to prison for?
A: The range is from 0 months to 12 months. Six months is the standard time period.
Q: What is Clemency?
A: Clemency – Is an “umbrella term” that refers to the Governor’s power to alter the decision of a trial court. The Governor may issue a Pardon (total forgiveness of criminal penalty) or a Commutation (reduction of criminal penalty).
Q: How do I apply for Clemency?
A: The applications for Pardons and Commutations can be found under the Forms section of this website. An application must be reviewed by the Parole Board, and will then be reviewed by the governor in the order that it was reviewed by the board.
Q: Do I need to apply for clemency in order to restore my right to vote?
A: The right to vote is restored to a convicted felon once their sentence is discharged pursuant to Amendment 51 of the Arkansas Constitution. Please check with your county clerk for further information about voting.
Q: Is the recommendation of the Parole Board binding?
A: The governor relies on the recommendation of the Parole Board. If the Board recommends the governor deny the application he/she will probably follow that recommendation. If the board recommends the governor grant the application, he/she may still deny it. The applicant should not petition the governor for consideration unless the application has already been reviewed by the board and the file sent to the governor’s office. There is no appeal process for clemency. If the application is denied in writing, that decision is final.