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Living with 290

Living with 290: Back to Jail

I’m a convicted 290 registrant. I was released from prison after serving 100% of a 3 year sentence. No good time. I’ve been on parole for 18 months and during that time I have been returned to custody on 12 separate occasions for non-criminal conduct. I’ve been held to a higher legal standard than the average citizen which has caused my re-incarceration for conduct such as entering a park or having a girlfriend with kids, all of which has no relation to criminal activity. I took the 3 year deal thinking I’d do my time and have a chance to start over again. I had no idea I’d be subject to re-incarceration for the next 7 years. I served my time … Get rid of parole and give guys like me a fair chance to start over again.

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  1. B

    The general theory of parole is that someone sentenced to a four year term, gets half time for good behavior and parole for the remaining two years. As you are released from prison you are given a list of conditions of parole in the form of a contract. If you don’t like the terms then you stay in prison and serve your entire term.

    For those who are given no good time credits but are given an unreasonable list of parole conditions, it seems they are not given equal protection under the law. We presume this has been tested in the courts, but has it?

    My vision of a quality corrections system includes lots of good time credits (full employment for inmates) and a parole system that helps and guides parolees into good jobs, good choices and full integration into society. This bs that we have now exists to make our pathetic politicians feel good and provide for full employment with plenty of overtime opportunities for everyone in law enforcement.

    Law enforcement could devote more time on gangs and unsolved murders, but that is dangerous work and God knows they don’t want to do that. The current system is safe, generous and ego boasting. And it is our job to change all that.

    • Anonymous Nobody

      This bit about serving 100% of the sentence in prison — and THEN getting out on parole. It has been my understanding that there is NO parole if you serve all of your prison time. In fact, that would be extending the sentence, since when you are on parole you are considered by law to still be in custody.

      So, perhaps I need some explanation about people suddenly talking about parole after serving ALL of the sentence in prison already. Gee, I even recall the case of a murderer who had the whole state terrified because he refused to accept parole, wanted to serve his entire prison sentence simply so he would not have any parole when he got out, and stayed inside for some years longer — and people feared he wanted to drop out of sight and go after the people who got him convicted (he didn’t, has never been heard of again).

      You can’t serve everything you are sentenced to — and then the state add additional time on parole. Parole is classified the same as being in prison, that is as being in custody. (You could think of it as in a sense being a more loose form of work release.)

      Still, parole conditions, and 290 restrictions, can be and are very onerous, very ridiculous, not even a close call about being very punishing, extremely so – and to my mind very unconstitutional even if our courts lie through their teeth and rule otherwise, no matter facts, no matter prior rulings, no matter anything at all. Our courts over the past 25 years have been completely taken over by the right wing (those being called liberals are not, are moderate, and those being called moderate hardly are, are pretty well on the right, and those being called right wingers are completely crazed, insane lunatics.

  2. Tim

    I couldn’t agree more. The California budget for corrections is about the same as for higher education and dwarfs job development programs. Big Government has not been lessened by welfare reform or cutting services to the poor. It’s only transfered the money from somewhat helping people, to punative measures that keep “undesirables” poor and powerless. We criticize communist countries for doing the same thing. The prison population in the free USA is five times what it was in the 70’s, while real wages for most everyone has dropped since then. And does anyone feel more safe and secure? The answer must be a resounding no if you look at the popularity of increasing sentences and sex offender registration laws.

  3. td777

    It used to be that way in California, but a few years back, the law enforcement union lobbied to have parole no longer just for the remainder of the incarceration sentence but as an additional term of punishment. That is why in sentencing now, the number of years of parole is included in addition to the term of incarceration. I don’t know if any other states do this, but I know many states do not. I can only wish it were the case that completing a prison term would result in no parole in California. I was sentenced to two years(with half time). Unfortunately, they added another three years on parole. I did those three years without any added time for violations because I played by their rules and didn’t do things I knew the terms would not allow.

    While I do understand you are getting a raw deal in this, as we all have, I hope you also understand that it is entirely possible to avoid further incarceration by playing by their rules. When you do things you know violate your parole terms(entering parks, dating a woman with children, etc), then you honestly have no one to blame but yourself for your actions. No one but you forced you to enter a park, no one but you chose to date a woman who had children. Wise up and accept some responsibility for your actions. I promise, because I’ve been there myself, it will make parole much easier to bear.

    • Anonymous Nobody

      Thanks for that explanation about the parole after full prison term. I had no idea, had never heard of that law change, and such is never reported in news stories when someone is sentenced.

  4. greg scott

    california has no truth in sentencing. you get convicted you get parole. and if you don’t sign your parole conditions you don’t get out on parole untill you sign. and your parole don’t start till you sign and are released. Now parole by law you can get off if you show no good cause to keep you.
    but now in california they make you do your full term of parole if 290 to keep them in a job. the parole board is spose to have accurrate information, but in my case they held my parole another year, for no good cause, they even lied said I was arrested 2 times not true and that I had 2 offence for 290 rather than the one case from 1985 thank you g.scott290

  5. DJ

    g.scott290 I would like to discuss this further with you. I also am aware of the penal code section, as well as the parolee handbook which says “any sex offender” subject to three years parole “shall be discharged upon the 12th month of continuous parole”, unless there is good cause for retaining a person on parole. I spoke to my agent about this and she said that it doesn’t happen, no one gets off early. That the paperwork at your annual date goes through the channels everyone approves the review. In my case I have no violations, passed polygraphs, and compliant in every way, then she said it gets sent back to her saying retain on parole. But why? How can they so blatantly go against the written law when there is no good cause at all?

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