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Non-revocable parole creating problems for police on streets

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Posted: Monday, May 24, 2010 12:00 am

At the end of their shifts, our patrol supervisors forward a summary of the day's events to the command staff.

I noticed a reoccurring theme in the summaries this past week. Parolees, or people who had been released from prison with the agreement that they be monitored and supervised by a parole agent, were involved in the commission of the crimes.

Last Friday, Special Investigations Unit detectives and parole agents went looking for a parolee on Eden Street. He left prior to their arrival but they caught another parolee crawling out of a basement window. Two days later SWAT was called out to search for a parolee who ran from officers, tossing a loaded handgun on the ground as he ran off. The next day two young boys were robbed at knifepoint on the Tokay High campus. It was a Sunday afternoon and classes were not in session. Officers arrested a parolee a short distance away and charged him with the robbery. A few days later officers found a parolee-at-large hiding on the roof of a house on Oak Street.

Most people don't realize "non-revocable parole" went into effect in California on Jan. 25. This law authorizes the state to release thousands of "non-violent" offenders from prison without placing them on traditional parole. In other words, a parole agent will not check up on them and they cannot be returned to prison unless they commit another crime. The intent was to ease the overcrowding, reduce the budget and allow agents to concentrate on more violent offenders.

Proponents say only non-violent prisoners are being released on the streets of our communities. A non-violent parolee is defined as a person who was not sent to prison for a "serious felony," who did not commit a serious disciplinary offense while in prison, who is not a member of a prison gang, and someone Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation determined was not likely to re-offend.

Three of the parolees I mentioned earlier were on parole for "non-violent" offenses. The guy who was crawling out of the basement window was on parole for dealing drugs. The man who robbed the two boys at Tokay High was on parole for possession of stolen property. The woman who hid on the roof was also on parole for possession of stolen property. The suspect who tossed the gun was on parole for burglary, which, according to the penal code, is a "serious" offense. He was convicted of burglary after he entered an empty house and took a computer.

One of the obvious problems with non-revocable parole is that it puts more parolees on the street at a time where all public agencies, including state parole, are having a hard time maintaining effective staffing levels. The question remains whether it's going to cost more to track down, arrest and convict the "non-violent" offenders than it would be to have them complete their sentences in prison.

The passage of non-revocable parole serves as a vivid reminder that the decisions made by legislators in Sacramento have a real impact on the quality of life in our city. Releasing thousands of parolees into our communities where there are few jobs, dwindling mental health and rehabilitation services, and fewer cops is a "perfect storm."

But the situation in Lodi is far from hopeless. Our local parole agents are dedicated professionals who are doing their best in these trying times. They work closely with our officers to make sure people on traditional parole in our area are monitored. The agents participate in operations sponsored by our department that target parolees, probationers and gang members in the Lodi area every three months. And the parole fugitive apprehension teams visit our town on a regular basis.

Even though the results of non-revocable parole might seem overwhelming, we will continue to work diligently with parole and the members of our community to focus our resources and keep our citizens safe.

Any comments, questions or advice for Behind the Badge can be e-mailed to Jeanie Biskup at jbiskup@pd.lodi.gov; mailed to Lodi Police Department, 215 W. Elm St., Lodi, CA 95240; or asked by phone at 333-6864.

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • posted at 2:18 am on Tue, Jun 1, 2010.


    TC,,Carlos,,I agree.And "Pressure",just when I think you've said what I believe to be the goofiest thing ever,,you top yourself.Wow.

  • posted at 2:19 am on Mon, May 31, 2010.


    "Bangers take guns from sissies like you"Name just one incident in which a CCW holder ANYWHERE in the US has had a gun "taken" from them. Please just one.

  • posted at 5:16 pm on Fri, May 28, 2010.



  • posted at 9:23 am on Wed, May 26, 2010.


    pre$$ure$on wrote on May 24, 2010 10:51 PM:" What is it you gun fetish freaks are so deathly afraid of? Maybe those you screwed over or cheated who'd like to get even someday? Bangers take guns from sissies like you. Maybe you shouldn't go out after 11AM if you feel you need a shooter to be safe?"We can always count on you pre$$ur$on to be a COMIC regarding serious issues that affect Men, women, children and Business. What are you afraid of pre$$ur$on? Are you afraid of your friend who had to go to jail for violating the law, might get shot?Citizens have a right to protect themselves.

  • posted at 9:20 am on Wed, May 26, 2010.


    These Felons have CHOSEN their Past, present and future and are a THREAT to Citizens and Businesses! They have no desire to "Obey the law"...yet the City Police Chief remains ADAMANT, that very very few citizens with clean records are able to be approved for a concealed weapons permit.With a clean record, and firearms qualification, and paying the required fees, The Public has a better chance not to be a FATAL victim of the next Parole, Sex Offender, or idiot high on his drug of choice.It will take a HIGH number of needless deaths at the hands of criminals before the Lodi Police Chief loosens his grip on who gets a gun permit.

  • posted at 1:18 pm on Tue, May 25, 2010.


    I would rather be judged by a jury of 12, than buried by 6 pallbearers. The police departments and politicians are completely off the wall on this one. Their job is write a report. I always carry a gun and have no intention of shooting any decent person. Someone attacking my family or me> yep. Empty and reload.

  • posted at 10:38 am on Tue, May 25, 2010.


    What a complete joke: Letting convicts out "because we need to save money". Seems to me to be a self-serving practice that guarantees repeat business for those who earn their living in this "industry".And I'm not referring to the paroled convicts...I mean the "industry" of prisons, lawyers, cops, politicians. These jailbirds are almost CERTAINLY going to commit crimes and return to the "industry". How cool...repeat customers!!!

  • posted at 2:08 am on Tue, May 25, 2010.


    Haha pressure, can't say it better than t jeff. An article in the Wall Street Journal a few years ago compared citizen shootings with police shootings. Police fired more rounds per encounter, were more likely to miss their target, more likely to wound an innocent bystander, and were more likely to injure themselves than a citizen.

  • posted at 12:46 am on Tue, May 25, 2010.


    The result of the wooosification of America comes to chime in. Only in the progressive mind would someone who has integrity, self-reliance, and individual responsibility be considered abnormal. Amazing how far this country has fallen from its founding. Black is white, night is day, cats love dogs and on and on. Go back to watching Oprah and Springer, the rest of us will share in the truth and attempt to take care of ourselves. The govt cheese truck will be by later with your delivery.

  • posted at 5:51 pm on Mon, May 24, 2010.


    What is it you gun fetish freaks are so deathly afraid of? Maybe those you screwed over or cheated who'd like to get even someday? Bangers take guns from sissies like you. Maybe you shouldn't go out after 11AM if you feel you need a shooter to be safe?

  • posted at 12:36 pm on Mon, May 24, 2010.


    t jefferson,You have my vote. LPD can only do so much! After that, it is up to us, and the NRA to keep things safe and secure.

  • posted at 4:02 am on Mon, May 24, 2010.


    What percentage of non violent non revocable parolees commit crimes vs parolees who committed violent crimes?

  • posted at 2:32 am on Mon, May 24, 2010.


    Hmm...criminals released from jail/prison committing crimes...predictable for anyone with common sense. LPD not issuing CCWs for citizens self defense...typical.1st time one of these dirtbags kills someone while committing a crime...inexcusable.Come on LT. be honest, is it the responsibility of the police to protect individuals? Can the police be everywhere at once? Why do you not want citizens taking responsibility for themselves and be allowed the means to defend themselves? Are you afraid that an armed population would reduce the need for police? Seems to work in other states where there are a lot less police officers and a whole lot less crime....


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