Being sentenced to time in prison triggers a countdown to the day you can walk out of that facility. However, many individuals who are in prison in Maryland are paroled before that day.
Not everyone who is incarcerated is eligible for parole. Some convictions come without that possibility. In Maryland, for example, you can’t be paroled prior to finishing a mandatory minimum sentence. Using a handgun to commit a felony, some subsequent drug convictions, and sentences of life in prison without the possibility of parole are few other examples of situations in which parole isn’t an option.
The time that you are required to serve before you are eligible for parole depends on the type of crime for which you are convicted. Violent crimes require that you serve half of your sentence. Nonviolent crimes only require one-quarter of your time to be served.
If you are eligible for parole, your case is considered by the Maryland Parole Commission. If you are approved for parole, you will still have to be under the supervision of an officer with the Division of Parole and Probation. During this time, you can live out in the community. However, you must follow specific rules and meet certain criteria to remain out of prison.
Parolees who fail to comply with the terms of their parole are subject to legal action. This can lead to them being sent back to prison to complete the remainder of their term. If you are facing a parole violation charge, you must review your options with an experienced criminal defense attorney.