Parole and probation

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Parole and probation are two systems for supervising defendants outside of prison. Other similar systems are pretrial release and supervised release. All of these systems put the defendant under the supervision of a probation officer, who reports to the court.

In the 1980s, the U.S. Government abolished federal parole and instituted supervised release in its place, along with a system of sentencing guidelines. Many probationers violated their terms of release and are sent back to prison.[1] Bruce L. Benson proposed in To Serve and Protect that prisoners be allowed to buy early release by means of parole bonds, much as they are allowed to buy pretrial release by bonding out of jail.


  1. "The Failure of Government Justice" by Cott, T. Norman Van, 1 March 2006