How Prison Parole ACTUALLY Works

If you’ve watched a lot of prison shows,
you may have noticed a common theme among many of the inmates who are interviewed by
the television crew. That being, many of them don’t seem able
to take responsibility for their own actions. For instance, you may have heard some say
something along the lines of, “It wasn’t my fault. If she wasn’t in the room, I wouldn’t
have had to ‘shake her up,’” or, “I was just doing what kids do, messing around
because I was bored. All I did was harmlessly ‘jack’ someone
and they went and put me here in the slammer!” Perhaps some are simply unaware of why their
crimes negatively impacted other people. Others may just be feeling a little salty
that they had been caught. Regardless of their reasoning, we think it’s
safe to say that these arguments wouldn’t hold up in front of a parole board. So, what is parole? How does it work exactly and what’s the
process? First off, we think it should go without saying
that any arguments like, “I was dared to do it” or, “if the kid didn’t have the
lollipop in the first place, I wouldn’t have had to steal it,” aren’t going to
earn you a whole lot of sympathy. So, if someone is that dense while in jail,
they can probably kiss their chances for parole goodbye. Uttering something like this is almost on
the same level or mental capacity as asking a Disney World staff member, “what time
is the 3 o’ clock parade?” If you want out of prison, you really must
pick up some degree of common sense with your choice of words and be on your best behavior. This includes owning up to and accepting responsibility
for past behavior while working to improve your conduct in the future. According to our sources, parole is “conditional
freedom for a prison inmate.” The prisoner, also referred to as the “parolee,”
gets freedom from behind bars, “but has to live up to a series of responsibilities.” Not everyone who is arrested gets considered
for parole. According to, “offenders who
have been convicted of first-degree murder, kidnapping, rape, arson, or drug trafficking
are generally not eligible for parole.” For a prisoner to go through the process of
parole, they must first serve a portion of their prison sentence. The case is then referred to the board who
decides whether they should be released into the community or continue the remainder of
their sentence. We should note that a parolee who violates
the rules of the conditional release risks being returned into custody. So, what are these rules and how does a prisoner
become a parolee? It really depends on the severity of the offense
and the individual. To answer these questions in more depth, we
should first explain the process of the parole board. The job of a parole board is to decide if
it is safe to release certain people from prison. Safe for society, that is. The parole board’s interest isn’t focused
on the inmates themselves but, rather, more towards the safety and wellbeing of the community
of law-abiding citizens outside of prison. Thus, parole is not really that easy to obtain. It must be earned. Good behavior alone isn’t enough to do this
since the parole board also considers everything from age and mental stability to prior criminal
record. When members of the parole board examine a
prisoner’s case, they study and scrutinize hundreds of pages of evidence about the person,
from the initial sentencing to how they behaved in prison and what their plans are upon release. It is a grueling process that requires a lot
of training on the part of the parole board members. So, the prisoner should put on his best front
while being interviewed if he hopes to gain a sliver of their approval for release. Parole board members also consult a wide variety
of experts including psychologists, psychiatrists, probation officers and prison staff who have
worked with the person. So, if you’re a prisoner who has continuously
harassed and verbally abused the guards from your cell, this is where karma can kick you
to the curb. The victim is also invited by the parole board
to explain how the crime has impacted his or her life. So, if you’re the prisoner going through
the process with the parole board, you’d better hope and pray that your victim does
not hold a serious grudge against you. As you can probably imagine, the position
of parole board members comes with a lot of pressure. If the board gives approval to release a prisoner
and that person returns to a life of crime, they’ve just unintentionally unleashed criminal
activity back into society. That means that the weight of any actions
the person takes against others are on their shoulders. Thus, it makes sense that members of the parole
board would be tough to sway since they must take the decision-making process very seriously. It is also probably a lot easier for them
to deny prisoners release than to grant it. Thus, they will only release someone from
prison if they truly believe that the risk to the public is minimal. So how do parole board members determine that
someone is safe enough to release? First, they question whether the person going
through parole completely understands what lead them to commit their offense in the first
place. This requires some level of self-awareness
on the part of the prisoner as well as the capacity to take responsibility for the crime
that was committed. Our introduction for this episode opened with
lines that are examples of terrible responses to give to questions from a parole board. So, what is an example of a good answer? Probably something along the lines of, “I
recognize that what I did was terrible, and I live with the guilt every day. I never should have attacked my girlfriend
with that banana. I am always working on ways to improve myself
while I am in prison so that I can be an asset to the community and a productive member of
society once I am released.” As goofy as the banana example is, it is not
that far fetched. Believe it or not, this really did happen. In January 2014, a Florida man – not surprisingly
– was arrested for domestic violence after assaulting his girlfriend with a banana. Interestingly, a woman in Lake County, Florida,
was also arrested in October 2013 for twerking in front of a school bus full of children. She was charged with disorderly conduct. Luckily, she didn’t have to go through the
parole board since she was released from jail after posting a $250 bond. Nevertheless, we think that being a parole
board member in the state of Florida must be pretty interesting, to say the least. So, what else do parole board members look
at? Well, as part of the decision-making process,
they examine the factors that could lead the prisoner to potentially commit the offense
again. They also look for evidence of change and
how the person is different now from when the crime was committed. They want to know if the person under review
has used their time in prison productively while working on the issues, problems and
addictions that got them arrested to begin with. One important question that is asked by the
parole board is “what will your life be like outside of prison?” When asked this, it is best to explain your
plans for a different lifestyle from the one you had before. We wouldn’t recommend an answer like, “well,
I hope to reunite with my old gang and maybe hit some bars and clubs like we used to.” Instead, you should maybe explain how you
plan on doing some volunteer work, perhaps with old people in a nursing home, reading
to the blind, or helping out at an animal shelter. Maybe discuss how you plan on applying for
a small job and getting a little apartment in a clean part of town. Emphasize how your release will benefit rather
than burden the community. The parole board also wants to know about
your family relationships and whether you will have enough social support when you are
outside of prison. The field of psychology consistently highlights
the vitality of social connections and support in many ways. Having others for encouragement and support
has a massive influence on those trying to get through a wide variety of difficult situations. From grieving the loss of a loved one to recovering
from alcoholism, we often take for granted the importance of having others around to
help us through tough circumstances. This also applies to prison inmates. According to a 2016 dissertation by Hail-Jares,
“considerable research has illustrated how social support systems contribute to better
in-prison behavior, prompt prosocial identity change, and, eventually translate into lower
long-term recidivism rates.” Just as hanging out with the wrong crowd can
encourage maladaptive behavior, spending time with good people can promote healthy, beneficial,
proactive behaviors, which, in turn, lower the chances of a prisoner recommitting an
offense. The problem, as Hail-Jares explains, is that
many incarcerated men tend to be drawn towards other inmates to lean on for support leading
up to release. It can be difficult for prisoners to obtain
social support from the outside since their family members may have ostracized them for
their crimes and for getting arrested. Making wholesome, new friends outside of prison
can also be difficult since your label as an ex-convict may make you more susceptible
to being ostracized by others. Thus, the subject of social support consideration
by the parole board is a common obstacle for prisoners hoping to be released. After all, what law-abiding citizens want
to associate with a criminal? One of our more eccentric writers, who once
thought of the random idea for a diamond studded collar for your pet cockroach, told us about
a peculiar experience she had when she was single and using online dating sites and apps. She arranged to meet with a guy in a public
setting that she had been chatting with via keyboard for about a week or two. He said that he had to meet at a restaurant
in a specific location, which seemed a little odd to her at first, but she shrugged it off
and continued with the date anyway. While eating lunch at a sushi restaurant,
he mentioned that he had a 6 o’clock curfew and couldn’t stay out late. She was puzzled by this as it seemed a little
more than unusual. Upon further inquiry, her date admitted that
he was on house arrest and couldn’t stay out later than this. Startled, she nearly choked on her sashimi. She then attempted to make the politest excuse
possible while hightailing it outta there. So, guys, as a side suggestion, you should
take heed of this story because if you’re ever on a first date that is going badly,
telling the girl that you’re on house arrest might just end up being your ticket to freedom. It has the added benefit of granting you with
the perfect excuse to end the date early if need be. If, however, your date ends up being okay
with it when you lie about being on house arrest… well, we wish you luck with that. Here at the Infographics Show, the misery
of our writers’ experiences provide us and you, our beloved viewers, with endless, quality
entertainment. This is why we decided to exploit – er, rather,
use her story as a real-life example to demonstrate how it can be difficult for prisoners to form
new friendships and relationships once they are out of prison or undergoing some form
of porbational punishment. Like with the case of the poor house arrest
guy. Now, part of you may be wondering what the
difference is between parole and probation. explains that, whereas
parole is a period of community supervision upon release from prison, probation is a court-ordered
period of supervision in the community that is an alternative to jail or prison. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics,
about 4.8 million people in the U.S. are on probation or parole. Probation is mainly restricted to those who
are low risk, first-time, non-violent offenders. House arrest is included in the probation
category, which means that our writer’s past online suitor was probably not that bad,
or, at least, not a “hardened” criminal. Maybe she overreacted. Though, we can also see why she would have
been too shocked to continue her date. After all, online dating can be daunting and
nerve-wracking as is with the average joe or the average jane, let alone with someone
who has offended the law in the past. If you’ve watched our other video, The Tinder
Killer, then maybe you have some inclination of what we mean. So, if you’re on house arrest or undergoing
any kind of probation or parole, it might be best just to be upfront about it when trying
to meet people, especially when using online dating resources to do it. Find someone who is cool about that sort of
thing. Either that or you could simply take the easy
way out and blame the timid girl who didn’t want to finish your date, saying, “well
it was all her fault for not being cool with me about my house arrest situation.” Whatever floats your boat. Though, we should mention that this attitude
might hinder rather than benefit your cause. So, for prisoners who earn parole, what are
some of the rules they must follow once they are released into the community? Some examples of conditions include regularly
reporting to parole officers, mandatory participation in intensive supervision programs, finding
and maintaining regular employment, no drug or alcohol usage, no leaving the state without
permission – if in the U.S., and no associating with others who have criminal records. This last one can be tough since, as we just
mentioned with our writer’s comical story, it can be a challenge for anyone with a criminal
record to befriend the average, non-offender without being scrutinized for their past activity. Thus, life as a parolee can be quite limiting. But at least it’s better than being behind
bars. What do you think about the process of parole? Would you be cool with befriending or even
dating ex-convicts or parolees? Do you already know someone who is going through
parole? We’d love to hear your stories. Let us know in the comments! Also, be sure to check out our other video
Jail vs Prison – What’s ACTUALLY The Difference?! Thanks for watching, and, as always, don’t
forget to like, share, and subscribe. See you next time!

100 Replies to “How Prison Parole ACTUALLY Works

  1. Being closed away in a concrete building and promptly forgotten about isn't really great for personal morale.

    That being said, *24601*!!!!!

  2. Parole is there to supervise the offender. Probation is there to violate you and charge you with a new made up crime. I had 2 years of probation back in 08. I had a well paying job, a very decent apartment, and was starting a life with my girlfriend. I passed every drug test with flying colors and passed every surprise home inspection. I was almost violated for working on a police car due to being in the auto body field. "That's police contact!" Well the head of probation for the state got involved and had the charges dropped and gave me administrative discharge. I never even had any contact with the officer. Just turned the wrench on his car. Now keep in mind I was on probation for a drinking offense, not robbery or injuring anyone.

  3. This channel consistently gets things soooooo wrong! For one florida makes the news because as soon as you are arrested EVERYTHING about the arrest including the complaint which are often bald faced lies. The main stream media NEVER posts a retraction if the testimony was outright perjury, nor does the system ever punish the perjerors. In addition, florida has no parole whatsoever. Law states you must serve 85% of your sentence no matter what, even if exonerated of your crime and someone else gets convicted, you WILL be DENIED an appeal after 30 days from your adjudication. It's all about the money really, but even still, bonding out does not get you out of trouble. It just means you don't have to serve time until your trial where they decide how long you serve for.

  4. They do ankle monitor for parole in California and Federal Prison does probation instead of parole so it really has nothing to do with how “hardened” of a criminal the individual is.

  5. A lot of prisons are releasing inmates to parole because it’s cheaper but the drawback is the paroles don’t have the fear of going back to prison and just becomes a revolving door.

  6. Why tf did I get 4 ads during this video??? If this is a thing set up by the channel, I’m not going to keep watching Infographics, where I can get 4 ads in the span of 10 mins.

    If this wasn’t set up, I’m sorry guys, please look into it thought… If it was set up… Don’t be surprised if sub counts start dwindling…

  7. As someone who served time in prison one of the things that surprised me was how much of the population that saw the reason they were in prison as being someone else’s fault. Probably over 90% of the people I talked to while in prison didn’t think they had anything to do with being there. They wouldn’t accept responsibility for their actions. It was always the cop that arrested them or the person that ratted them out that was to blame. It had nothing to do with them choosing to break the law. At least not in their eyes. It also blew my mind at how many guys would get locked down or put in solitary for doing something against the rules and then getting caught but then wondering why the C.O.’s were always out to get them. They didn’t seem to understand that if you don’t break the rules then you don’t have to deal with getting reprimanded. Another thing that I noticed was that a high number of inmates were left handed. All my life growing up I only knew or even saw a handful of left handed people. In prison I couldn’t believe how many were left handed. I don’t know if there’s any statistics or research on that but it seems like an awful lot of criminals are left handed. It was just something that I noticed and couldn’t believe.

  8. Hey Infographic, I used to love your channel but now, your head nodding animations is getting pretty dull. And also in every video, the subject materials only starts from half way through the video. The intro is too long!

  9. I had to say, "unless you're black or mexican" about twenty times while watching this video. Yay for "for-profit prisons", and systematic racism. Go Murica ! Still #1 in something

  10. My best friend got out of a federal prison about a year ago, and we’re still still friends if not better for it. Everyone makes mistakes. I’m not perfect so I don’t judge him at all.

  11. I've been to prison and I also have been paroled you make no scene like people on parole are weirdos and look down on I don't know were you getting your facts from but it's a lot of it was BS

  12. There's NO PAROLE IN FLORIDA! There was over a decade ago. I've done years in FL state prisons and can assure u that there wasnt parole in prison last time i was there in 2008-2011 and i havent heard its changed.

  13. HAHAHAHAHAHAhahahahahaha…earned? Yeah right. If we were dealing with some kind of A.I. not hampered by prejudices, having a bad night's rest or similar you might have a point. Since the penal system tends to attract those of a more authoritarian bent and the board see plenty of people frequently, you are just another number, not of any REAL consequence. Do you have any idea how many people I saw parole, come back, some even paroled again?

  14. Hey so let's just release this killer back into society…so another innocent person can lose their life..yep now that is some real genius action right there smh

  15. My ex father in law told the judge that he should be allowed to do whatever he wanted to do in his own home. His crime? Child molestation. I hope he dies in prison.

  16. I have seen people get 5 and 6 year sentences and parole out after going to prison for a few months. They do get timed served for county jail though. As long as it's not violent and depending on the wording of the sentence…

  17. This is very cool! Also I wouldn't mind having a gf or friend that is a parolee. Especially if that person is a changed person from what their crime was.

  18. . This video had so much nonsensical fluff bit that had nothing to do with the question. Speaking of that, just because someone went to prison, doesn't mean they are guilty, So I suppose the ironic thing about parole is that honest innocent people probably won't get it.

    The video doesn't really explain much about how it works. One thing not covered is that in some states, the parolee has to pay for their own parole officers service, coupled that with requirements to get a job but also required to disclose their status and that said status can make it impossible to get a job, there are circumstances where people have gone back to crime to pay for their parole officers and basic living.

  19. The info in this video is just a "by the book" explanation of the process. In reality, it could not be further from the truth. 1, the parole board is made up of some of the most corruptible people who take bribes (though not often, nor common), hold biased opinions of prisoners, deny even the most conformed inmates for reasons as ludicrous as not having any disciplinary "tickets" during a long period of time or most commonly, they give no reason at all for the denial of parole. Most who are paroled return to crime the same week they are released. Get real facts for your videos. It is becoming extraordinarily clear that this channel pushes false narratives and even some down right lies. Do your own research to get the truth of anything! Especially a YouTube video

  20. I got put on house arrest for no insurance. Not even in a wreck. Pulled over for a ticket that was dropped. After I paid a 350 dollar fine. What even….I didn't care much cause I had work release and I am anti-social anyway but c'mon.

  21. I just remember that Jaycee Dugard's kidnapper was on parole at the time for a prior offense. No inspection ever noticed anything wrong during the entire 18 years of her captivity. In fact, they thought he was a model prisoner. Some people can fool the system if they act convincing.

  22. Surely it's not so much a matter of the prisoner "taking responsibility" as knowing the right thing to say to the Parole Board.

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