The use of electronic monitoring as an enhancement to community control continues to receive judicial approval. Radio frequency electronic monitoring is utilized in all 20 Judicial circuits. This system electronically tethers an offender to their home during specified periods of the day or night with violations noted and investigated. This system, however, is unable to determine the offenders whereabouts during approved absences from their residence. Global Positioning Satellite system electronic monitoring, presently in use in 18 Judicial circuits, continuously tracks offender movements at home and in the community with uniquely defined inclusion and exclusion zones for each offender. Violations of this monitoring system are immediately sent to an on call officer in the circuit for resolution.
Sex Offender Community Control is designated for offenders placed on probation whose crimes were committed on or after October 1, 1997, and who are placed under supervision for violation of chapter 794 or s. 800.04, s. 827.071, or s. 847.0145. Per Florida Statute, the Court must impose specific special conditions, as set forth in s. 948.03(5)(b) in addition to all other standard and special conditions imposed. Sex Offender Community Control is designed to enhance the protection of the community and to require treatment/counseling for the offender. The offender is also required to submit two specimens of blood to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to be registered with the DNA data bank.
Any individual who is charged with any non-violent third degree felony is eligible for the pretrial intervention program. Approval of the administrator and the consent of the victim, the state attorney, and the judge hearing the case are required in order to formally accept the offender into the program. If the offender completes the conditions of the program which could include restitution to the victim, counseling and/or community service, then the State Attorneys Office will not prosecute the case. Since the statute has been changed to allow any non-violent third degree felony as criteria for entrance into the program, PTI caseloads have steadily increased, as has the risk level of these offenders.
Any person charged with a felony of the second or third degree for purchase or possession of a controlled substance under chapter 893, and who has not previously been convicted of a felony, nor been admitted to a pretrial program, is eligible for admission into a pretrial substance abuse education and treatment intervention program approved by the chief judge of the circuit, for a period of not less than one year. At the end of the pretrial intervention period, the court shall make a decision as to the disposition of the pending charges. The court shall determine, by written finding, whether the defendant has successfully completed the pretrial intervention program. Failure to successfully complete the program shall result in the continued prosecution of the case by the State Attorneys Office.
Parole is a post-prison supervision program where eligible inmates have the terms and conditions of parole set by the Florida Parole Commission. Parole supervision is provided by the Florida Department of Corrections. Although Florida no longer has parole except for those offenders sentenced for offenses committed prior to October 1, 1983, caseloads have increased. These increases are attributed to other state cases, which have transferred supervision to Florida. There are currently 2,252 parolees in Florida (825 Florida cases, 1,422 other state cases and five unknown origin cases). On June 30, 2001, there were 5,682 Florida inmates eligible for parole. Of this number, 296 were being housed in facilities not operated by the Florida Department of Corrections.
Parole is a conditional extension of the limits of confinement after an offender has served part of his sentence. The period of parole cannot exceed the balance of the sentence. Under parole, the offender is to be supervised in the community under specific conditions.
An inmate sentenced to murder/manslaughter, sexual offenses, robbery or other violent personal crimes, and who has a previous commitment to a state or federal institution or has been convicted as a Habitual Offender or Sexual Predator, meets the criteria for conditional release. Upon reaching the release date with accrued gaintime, an inmate is placed on conditional release to serve up to the remainder of the length of sentence. A conditional release eligible inmate often accrues less gaintime than other inmates due to the nature of the offense. Conditional release is not technically an early release mechanism as it merely provides for post-release supervision for those considered serious offenders for up to the amount of gaintime accrued.
Other types of post-prison release supervision include control release, administrative control release, provisional release, supervised community release, conditional pardons and county work release. These types are not used as often, in part, because of adequate numbers of prison beds.