When a court hands you a sentence, there is a chance you will not have to serve all of it. If you succeed in applying for parole, you may get out early.
The problem is, Arkansas seems to prefer to keep people in prison. A recent report graded Arkansas parole procedures F on a scale of A to F. In other words, awful. By examining how parole works in the state, you will understand why it scored so low.
You will not meet with the parole board
In some states, those who decide to grant or deny parole meet with you first. Not here, although you will meet an investigator.
The prosecution can try to influence the decision
Many prosecutors interpret their role as putting someone in prison for as long as possible and ensuring they stay there. When you come up for parole, the prosecution may act to persuade the parole board to deny it.
Victims can seek to block parole
In specific crimes, the victims and their families can present to the parole board and try to persuade them to deny you an early release.
Parole is conditional
If you get parole, you need to understand you could lose it at any minute. It comes with numerous restrictions, and if you breach them, the review board may send you back to jail.
Getting parole is not easy. Defending your right to stay on parole is not easy either. Yet, that does not mean you should give up and sit out your sentence inside. Having strong representation gives you the best chance to get out early and begin to rebuild your life as soon as possible.