The terms and conditions of a persons probation are clear, cut, and dry. Probation is a prison sentence that has been suspended on the condition that the offender follows certain prescribed rules and commits no further offenses (Sieter, 2011). A probation officer evaluates offender progress and recommends intensity of supervision based on observations from time of conviction through the period of adjustment after release from an institution (FL DOC, 2012). The whole program is pretty much laid out for you, all you have to do is follow it.
Case #1 is Stanley Gravas a 41 year old male, apprehended for DWI (drinking while intoxicated). This is Mr Gravas’ second DWI offense. He states that the reason for the offense is due to the loss of his third child (son) in an apparent boating accident. I do hold some sympathy for Mr Gravas, but we have to admit we are a little shocked with him working for an insurance company for 18 years they had not noticed problems and provided assistance. He is well educated and seems to have a good head on his shoulders and does not present any need for stricter supervision, as long as we can get him back on the right track. It seems as if life was great (job, home) for the Gravas’ family prior to the death of the child. We strongly suggest and recommend that he definitely seek professional help, attend drug/alcohol treatment, and some sort of family counseling.
Stanley Graves has made tremendous improvements after following the conditions of his probation. Upon attending drug/alcohol treatment and frequent AA meetings, Mr. Graves has remained sober for two months. He and his family have benefited greatly from the counseling sessions on dealing with the death of the child. We believe that Mr. Graves is on the right track and will remain sober. Alcohol treatment and family counseling seems to be working for him and his family.
Case # 2 is offender Gary Harrison. He is a 29 year old male accused of aggravated assault. Harrison was convicted of two previous convictions for simple assault. Harrison was abused mentally and physically by his father. He did not finish high school and has a pattern of drug and alcohol abuse. Harrison's upbringing and teenage years started off rocky and it seemed hard from the get-go to lead a positive life. The only positive side is Harrison was employed before conviction, and will have the same job upon being released from prison. Harrison's parole plan consisted of drug/alcohol treatment, psychiatric evaluation/treatment, anger management, and intensive supervision.
The results of his parole was a disappointment. Harrison did not follow the parole plan from the beginning. He skipped his medication for his bi-polar condition, and skipped anger management and AA classes. We warned Harrison if any further violations occurred, it could land him back in prison. Harrison also assaulted his brother in his apartment. After the violations of his AA and anger management, Harrison should have been put back in jail. He had been convicted of 3 assault charges and should have not been taken lightly. Since the relationship between him and his brother were not known, Harrison should have been set up with a different place to stay after he was released. He was a high-risk offender with problems and could have been a threat to society.
During the criminal justice process, specific consideration is given to each case with regards to the sentencing aspect of the trial process. The old adage exists with let the punishment fit the crime. The same principle exists when deciding what conditions must be established. In addition, enforcement of those conditions must be followed. With the two cases discussed and with the same guidelines of policy supposedly being implemented between the two, it is evident that due to poor consideration (among other factors), these two cases have opposite end results. References:
Apollo Group, Inc. (2011). CJI Interactive. Chapter 12: Corrections in Community
Retrieved from CJA/234 – Introduction to Corrections
EBOOK COLLECTION: Seiter, R. (2011). Corrections an introduction (3rd edition). Upper
Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall.
FL DOC. (2012). FL DOC. Retrieved Oct 23, 2012, from FL DOC: