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The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Parole Division plays a critical role in supervising people who are on parole or mandatory release. If you violate any conditions of your parole, the Parole Division might issue a warrant for your arrest. Depending on the severity and type of your violation, they might continue to supervise you with new conditions or move forward with a hearing to revoke your parole.

In Texas, if someone’s parole is to be revoked, it must be done fairly, with a chance for the person on parole to be heard by an unbiased officer. For this reason, Texas has set up a special group called Hearing Operations. This group has officers trained specifically to handle these important meetings, ensuring that everyone released on parole or mandatory supervision is treated fairly.

Worried your parole might be revoked in Texas? You need tough legal defense. At Cofer & Connelly, PLLC, we have decades of experience and over 300 Texas jury trials behind us. We'll make sure your voice is heard. Call (512) 991-0576 or contact us online at Cofer & Connelly, PLLC. 

Hearing Operations

The Hearing Operations unit of the Board takes care of the whole process when someone's parole might be revoked. Their job includes setting up the hearing dates, looking into requests for lawyers, and making sure hearings are conducted properly. After the hearings, they review reports and help make recommendations about what should happen next, whether it’s continuing the parole under certain conditions or sending the person back to prison.

Types of Administrative Revocation Hearings

There are mainly two types of hearings in the parole revocation process. First, the preliminary hearing checks if there’s enough reason to move forward with a revocation hearing. Only those with new criminal charges or charges that haven’t gone to court yet get this hearing. The revocation hearing is the next step, where it’s decided if there’s strong enough evidence to believe that parole conditions were broken. If the evidence shows it’s more likely than not that a violation occurred, the Board can decide to either continue the parole with some changes, place the person in a special facility, or revoke the parole and return them to prison. If someone has been convicted of a serious crime, a mitigation hearing, similar to the revocation hearing, lets them argue why they should not have their parole revoked.

Board's Decision-Making in Revocation

When your parole hearing comes up, a panel made up of three members—including Board Members and Parole Commissioners—decides what happens next. This group votes and the majority’s decision counts. There are seven locations across Texas where these panels operate, and the panel that gets your case usually depends on where you’re being held. People known as Board Analysts review the information from your hearing and any waivers you've signed at these panel locations, except for certain special cases, which are handled by the central office.

Actions Taken During the Parole Revocation Process

After your hearing, the parole panel has several choices. They might decide to move forward with a revocation hearing, or they could transfer you to a program like the Intermediate Sanction Facility or the Substance Abuse Felony Punishment Facility for a while. They could also choose to keep you on supervision but change the conditions you need to follow. Sometimes, if you are past your discharge date, they might let you go free. Lastly, they can decide to revoke your parole or mandatory supervision, which means you would return to prison.

Responsibilities of Hearing Participants

In a revocation hearing, everyone has a role to play. You, as the offender, can decide whether to speak up about the violations you’re accused of. You can also have a parole lawyer by your side. You have the right to call witnesses through your parole officer, and you can ask questions of any witnesses in the hearing. It's up to you to defend yourself, bring evidence, and challenge any issues with the process or evidence presented against you.

The hearing officer, who works for the board, runs the hearing. They collect all the facts and make a summary of what’s relevant for the board to make a decision. They are supposed to be fair and not lean towards any side.

Your parole officer will present the evidence that you violated your parole conditions. They manage getting subpoenas for all necessary parties and make sure everyone knows who will be speaking at the hearing. They also make sure you and the hearing officer get copies of all documents that will be shown as evidence.

Parole revocation lawyers will help you by questioning witnesses and defending you against the allegations. They also handle legal motions and objections during the hearing.

Witnesses who are brought in must answer questions truthfully and stick to what’s relevant. Lastly, any observers in the room must stay quiet and follow the rules of the facility where the hearing takes place.

Administrative Hearing Process

When you or someone else on parole faces allegations of violating parole conditions, the Parole Division decides whether to bring you in for a hearing by issuing a warrant or a summons. Generally, there are two types of situations when a warrant is issued: one where you are entitled to both preliminary and revocation hearings, and another where you are entitled only to a revocation or mitigation hearing. If you find yourself in this situation, you must decide during your initial meeting with your Parole Officer whether to go through with your hearings or to waive them.

Procedures When a Warrant is Issued

If you have broken the rules of your parole, your parole officer will file a violation report. This report will help decide if a warrant should be issued for your arrest. If the parole officers find strong enough evidence in the violation report, a warrant will be issued and you will be detained. After your arrest, the sheriff who has you in custody will inform the Parole Division, which then decides whether to start the hearing process. If your alleged violations are purely administrative or you have already served time for any criminal conviction involved, a hearing will be requested. If there are ongoing criminal charges, the Parole Division will normally schedule a preliminary hearing and defer the revocation hearing until the criminal charges are resolved.

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Description automatically generatedRequesting and Conducting Hearings

Once you are detained for a suspected parole violation, the Parole Division will decide whether to hold a hearing. At your first meeting with a Parole Officer, you will be informed about your rights during the revocation process. You have the right to be personally served with a written notice detailing the alleged violations against you. If you are accused only of non-criminal (administrative) violations or if you have already been convicted of a new crime, you might not get a preliminary hearing. But you always have the right to a revocation hearing unless you decide to waive it.

During these hearings, you can fully present your side of the story. You have the right to show evidence, bring witnesses, and confront any witness against you unless the Hearing Officer has a strong reason to prevent this. Your attorney can help you make your case, question witnesses, and manage the evidence against you.

If your parole is revoked following the hearing, you will receive a report from the Hearing Officer explaining why your parole was revoked based on the evidence presented.

Circumstances for Reopening a Hearing

If your parole is revoked, you can ask Texas Board of Pardons for your case to be reopened within 60 days from the decision if you think there was a serious mistake or if new information comes up that could change the outcome. You would explain why you believe the hearing should be reopened, pointing out any errors or new evidence that may affect your case. The parole panel will review your request and can either agree to reopen your case for specific reasons, deny your request, or reverse the decision to revoke your parole.

Contact Our Austin Parole Revocation Lawyers

Are you worried about the possibility of having your parole revoked in Texas? This is a situation that requires serious legal support. You have the right to defend yourself and challenge any evidence against you in a hearing, but this can be overwhelming if you're going at it alone.

Clients trust Cofer & Connelly, PLLC for their defense because we've handled thousands of cases across a century of combined experience, with a solid track record in over 300 Texas jury trials. We can help in parole revocation hearings by speaking on your behalf, questioning witnesses effectively, managing legal objections, and ensuring your side of the story is heard loud and clear. We're here to advocate for the best possible outcome, whether that's maintaining your current parole status or arguing against unfair revocation.

Don't let the stress of this process weigh you down. Contact a parole revocation attorney at Cofer & Connelly, PLLC by calling (512) 991-0576 or contacting us online for a consultation with a criminal defense attorney. Let us help you secure your freedom and fight for your rights.

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