Welcome to the Prison Talk Online Community! Take a Minute and Sign Up Today!






Go Back   Prison Talk > U.S. REGIONAL FORUMS > PENNSYLVANIA > Pennsylvania Parole, Probation, Work Release, Halfway Houses & Community Service
Register Entertainment FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read

Pennsylvania Parole, Probation, Work Release, Halfway Houses & Community Service All information relating to parole, probation, halfway houses, community service and electronic monitoring in Pennsylvania should be posted here.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-03-2013, 09:09 AM
Ewyon Ewyon is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Union County, NJ
Posts: 6
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default 30 day-1 year sentence but on parole over a year?

Will try and make this as short as possible.

I have a girlfriend who was charged with retail theft (under ring) before I met her. The timeline as far as I can make out:

5/24/10-Plead guilty and it would be 30 days-year.
6/24/10-Granted parole and ordered to pay $35/month supervisory fee along with other stuff she had to pay.
6/16/11-Parole extended 6 months, max of 12/2011.

Then in August they scheduled a parole violation hearing for September. She never went. They issued a warrant.

Now, she was up front with me about all this, but told me they mostly just wanted the money (about $1100 she didn't pay) and that she thought if she went with the money they wouldn't give her any time.

A month ago she was pulled over in NJ for a traffic violation and they brought her in, and saw she had the hold from PA. I paid the fine right away, and PA came and got her.

She saw the judge last week and the judge said she'd have to serve the time. (was a huge bummer for me to find out the money didn't matter) However, her defense attorney said if we paid her $20 a week or so she'd keep working on it, and apparently the judge is revising the case. Not sure if I believe that though.

So anyway,

1. From the timeline I gave what's the best/worst case scenario as far as how much time she'll serve?

2. Is it possible that the judge could actually be re-considering? My girlfriend says she broke down after the verdict and told the judge she had kids and all.

3. At what point, if there is one, is it not worth paying the attorney to keep helping? If the sentencing comes in and its worst case scenario is there any point?

4. Just out of my own curiosity, I'm wondering how she could have a 30 day-1 year sentence but be on parole over a year? Without knowing anything about it I'm guessing since its a gift to the person they can keep them on longer than the sentence?

Sorry if the post was long, I'm new to all of this and just want to know what I'm in for.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 09-03-2013, 10:08 AM
patchouli's Avatar
patchouli patchouli is offline
PTO Administrator

PTOQ Editorial Team Member Staff Superstar Two Time Winner Staff Superstar Winner 

Donation Award 
 

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 41,510
Thanks: 41,944
Thanked 35,023 Times in 16,154 Posts
Default

I'm not familiar with PA, but my best guess is that her time on parole is related to the fact that her restitution isn't paid. Someone more knowledgable about the PA system will be along and answer your questions with more certainty.

Welcome to PTO!
__________________
prisontalkhelp@gmail.com

patchouli, PTO Admin



Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-08-2013, 07:02 AM
bobble60's Avatar
bobble60 bobble60 is offline
Moderator

PTO Moderator 

 

Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Suburban Philly, PA, USA
Posts: 6,792
Thanks: 614
Thanked 2,306 Times in 1,270 Posts
Default

Since your girlfriend had what we call a 'county sentence," the judge has control over it until the matter is closed. He extended her supervision as a means to collect the debt. (It's quite possible there was probation imposed after the jail/parole sentence, too.) Courts are getting very tough on people for not paying what they owe, especially when the money is for restitution.

Obviously, putting someone in jail for failure to pay a debt is counter-productive. You should find out if there is any balance due on her court account, either through counsel or by calling the Clerk of Court in that county. PAY the debt! Judges are constantly issuing and revising payment plans just to keep the money coming in, so she has to work with this judge.

If the judge makes her sit in jail for a month, it's to get the message across. As for the attorney, $20 per week is almost free. (Average attorney in a criminal case bills $400 per hour around here.)
__________________
Justice and compassion don't have to be exclusive.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-08-2013, 08:58 AM
Ewyon Ewyon is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Union County, NJ
Posts: 6
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

I already paid the fine. before pa picked her up. My girlfriend says she thinks they are keeping her to teach her a lesson and hopefully when she goes before the judge again shell be let out. I hope so. The Max out date they gave her is March 9. that's crazy. But she should have another court date soon.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 09-08-2013, 09:07 AM
CenTexLyn CenTexLyn is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: TX-US
Posts: 14,913
Thanks: 648
Thanked 11,099 Times in 6,007 Posts
Default

Her mistake (among others) was blowing off the hearing and allowing the matter to go to a warrant.

It is up to the defendant on supervision to prove indigency as a reason for non-payment of fees, fines or restitution. That also means having no frivolous expenditures like cable.

When one is on supervision through the Court, the Court generally has an ability to extend the term of supervision for non-compliance. It sounds like that is what happened here...and non-compliance has consequences.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to CenTexLyn For This Useful Post:
bobble60 (09-22-2013)
  #6  
Old 09-08-2013, 09:28 AM
Ewyon Ewyon is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Union County, NJ
Posts: 6
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CenTexLyn View Post
Her mistake (among others) was blowing off the hearing and allowing the matter to go to a warrant.

It is up to the defendant on supervision to prove indigency as a reason for non-payment of fees, fines or restitution. That also means having no frivolous expenditures like cable.

When one is on supervision through the Court, the Court generally has an ability to extend the term of supervision for non-compliance. It sounds like that is what happened here...and non-compliance has consequences.
I understand it has consequences. She had things going on in her life and sure didn't have any luxuries but thats not an excuse for neglecting her responsibilities.

I just hope they lessen it or let her go when she sees the judge again. like I said I understand their are consequences and that they can decide what they are but 7 months for a 30-1yr crime that she already did the yr parole on and (now) paid the restitution. that seems harsh.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 09-20-2013, 11:22 AM
Ewyon Ewyon is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Union County, NJ
Posts: 6
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Wow...this is crazy.

The motion for reconsideration was denied, and I found out her Min AND Max date is March. How is this possible? She's in there with people doing 3 months for weapon's charges and she's doing 6 months for not paying the court back (which she actually has done at this point) and they won't even give her time served from when NJ picked her up.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 09-22-2013, 06:59 AM
bobble60's Avatar
bobble60 bobble60 is offline
Moderator

PTO Moderator 

 

Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Suburban Philly, PA, USA
Posts: 6,792
Thanks: 614
Thanked 2,306 Times in 1,270 Posts
Default

If this is a VOP, then she was sentenced to a min and a max. Those dates can't be the same. It sounds like her min was one year before her max and she's being denied parole.
__________________
Justice and compassion don't have to be exclusive.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 09-23-2013, 07:59 AM
Ewyon Ewyon is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Union County, NJ
Posts: 6
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

They revoked her parole and gave her 6 months jail time. She will be eligible for parole again after 90 days they said. So her max is 6 months (March), and she's eligible again in 90 days (November).

This is ridiculous because I called her parole officer and she basically admitted part of why her parole was extended was the restitution. That has been paid for over a month. I understand that paying it after the fact doesn't make it OK, but wow this seems harsh. The PO said the other part of why her parole was extended was she had to "complete certain things" she didn't want to complete. My girlfriend said this is counseling, but that she saw a counselor and they cleared her and told her she didn't have to do it if she didn't want to.

I understand how the law works, and that it really doesn't matter what the situation is if you already allowed yourself to get into it, but 6 months, even 3 months, for not paying restitution on a 2nd degree misdemeanor where you already served the parole time and have now paid the restitution is a joke in my opinion.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 09-23-2013, 07:39 PM
CenTexLyn CenTexLyn is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: TX-US
Posts: 14,913
Thanks: 648
Thanked 11,099 Times in 6,007 Posts
Default

When you are on a supervised status and a counselor says "you don't have to be here if you don't want to,' what they have really said was "Look, your conditions require you to be here...we don't care if you are here or not but we will let your PO know and you will suffer the consequences for blowing this off."

The reality is that she blew off A LOT of obligations and has to pay the price. You do her no favors whatsoever by assuming the victim role. She made decisions KNOWING those decisions had consequences.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to CenTexLyn For This Useful Post:
bobble60 (09-29-2013)
  #11  
Old 09-24-2013, 07:20 AM
Ewyon Ewyon is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Union County, NJ
Posts: 6
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CenTexLyn View Post
When you are on a supervised status and a counselor says "you don't have to be here if you don't want to,' what they have really said was "Look, your conditions require you to be here...we don't care if you are here or not but we will let your PO know and you will suffer the consequences for blowing this off."

The reality is that she blew off A LOT of obligations and has to pay the price. You do her no favors whatsoever by assuming the victim role. She made decisions KNOWING those decisions had consequences.
I'm not taking a victim role. I've said many times in the thread that I understand these things have consequences. 6 months when you are a single mom who is not at all violent seems a little severe to me though. Actually, from what I've read about parole in PA, it is the max. Only she didn't have any hearings to see if she was a threat to the community or not, the judge just went and gave it to her.

She did not have to attend counseling. She completed all the requirements of her parole for the year with the exception of paying the restitution. She told me yesterday the counselor was a required psych eval which the person decided she was OK.

As I said, I understand these things have consequences. The max penalty for a first time parole violation when you had already completed the conditions of your parole for the year and just didn't pay the restitution (which is now paid) for a non-violent person/crime seems a little harsh and over the top. From what I understand the judge did not spend a lot of time reviewing the conditions of the case and the parole officer didn't even show up in court (which I know is not a requirement).
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 09-24-2013, 07:39 PM
CenTexLyn CenTexLyn is offline
Registered User
 

Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: TX-US
Posts: 14,913
Thanks: 648
Thanked 11,099 Times in 6,007 Posts
Default

Yes, you ARE playing a victim role, the 'poor poor me, life is so unfair' card if you will. Your own posts have indicated MULTIPLE places where she made things more difficult on herself and the Court clearly decided that she brought much of this on herself. As I opined in the beginning...she screwed the pooch when she chose to blow off the hearing in the beginning. SHE could have taken control of the situation and chose not to do so...sorry, but the single mom card doesn't excuse her there.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 09-29-2013, 07:37 AM
bobble60's Avatar
bobble60 bobble60 is offline
Moderator

PTO Moderator 

 

Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Suburban Philly, PA, USA
Posts: 6,792
Thanks: 614
Thanked 2,306 Times in 1,270 Posts
Default

Part of my role with the Prison Society is listening to inmate grievances. What I've learned most is that I never hear all the facts. When I sit in prison visiting rooms and overhear inmates grumbling, they all sound like victims ...

In this case, reality sucks. I agree that 3-6 months is harsh, but it's totally legal. And while the judge may not have reviewed her file aloud in the courtroom, you can't say for certain that he/she never reviewed the file beforehand. PA judges require PSI's and they read them. We also don't know what her agent has in probation file. We don't know what kind of programs she's been told to complete.

You see, a psych evaluation for the court is just a screening to detect serious mental illnesses. I'm glad she was given a clean bill of health in that regard. But perhaps the counseling she's "opting out of" is for other issues ... substance abuse ... alcohol abuse ... anger management ... parenting skills ... victim awareness ... These don't treat major psychological issues, but they do have a purpose. When you're in jail or under supervision, complete whatever programs they recommend.

People always seem amazed that women are in jail. I spent New Years Day at the Philadelphia women's facility. The house was packed. A lot of those women had children somewhere; a lot were pregnant, too. The court can not base its sentence on gender, and yet something tells me she caught a break with her judge.
__________________
Justice and compassion don't have to be exclusive.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:11 PM.
Copyright © 2001- 2017 Prison Talk Online
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Website Design & Custom vBulletin Skins by: Relivo Media
Message Board Statistics