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Law School Case Brief

Jefferson v. Pa. Bd. of Prob. & Parole - 2008 Pa. Commw. Unpub. LEXIS 497 (Commw. Ct. Dec. 9, 2008)

Rule:

The 120-day period within which a parole revocation hearing must be held does not run until the Board of Probation and Parole acquires jurisdiction over the parolee. 

Facts:

Petitioner Terik Jefferson was found guilty of aggravated assault, carrying a firearm without a license, carrying a firearm in public, possessing an instrument of a crime and criminal conspiracy aggravated assault in Philadelphia County and received a sentence of two-and-one-half to five years. Respondent Board of Probation and Parole released petitioner on parole on Aug. 11, 2004. On Feb. 16, 2006, Pennsylvania State Police charged petitioner with several new drug-related offenses. Petitioner was arrested by Board agents on Feb. 21, 2006, and transported him to the state correctional facility on Feb. 22, 2006, where he was detained pending disposition of the new criminal charges. On Aug. 14, 2007, petitioner was sentenced to serve four new concurrent terms of two years to five years less one day in the Cambria County prison. On Oct. 1, 2007, the Board filed a detainer at the Cambria County prison on the warrant of the Board. At the revocation hearing, petitioner objected to the timeliness of the revocation hearing but petitioner was recommitted as a convicted parole violator. On Oct. 25, 2007, petitioner filed a request for administrative relief of the Board's. In the request, petitioner asserted that his due process rights were violated because his parole revocation hearing was not held within 120 days. The Board affirmed the revocation decision. Petitioner filed a petition for judicial review from the Board's decision.

Issue:

Was petitioner's parole revocation hearing held within the statutory 120-day time limit?

Answer:

Yes.

Conclusion:

The court concluded that the revocation hearing held on Oct. 5, 2007, was timely and the Board's revocation decision was affirmed. It held that the hearing should be held within 120 days of the date that it received official verification of return of petitioner to the department of corrections' jurisdiction. The court noted that the 120-day period did not run until the Board acquired jurisdiction over the parolee. The "official verification" of conviction was identified as June 6, 2007, but it was undisputed that petitioner was transported from the Cambria County prison to the state correctional facility on Oct. 5, 2007. Therefore, petitioner's return to that facility on Oct. 5 marked the official verification date of return to a state correctional institution at which time the 120-day period began to run. Thus, the revocation hearing held on Oct. 5 was timely held under 37 Pa. Code § 71.4(1)(i).

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