U.S. Probation Officers, assigned to the Supervision Unit, are responsible for the community supervision of offenders who have been sentenced directly to probation by the Court, sentenced to time served and released directly to supervision, released to the supervised release portion of their sentence from the Federal Bureau of Prisons, or a parole sentence under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Parole Commission or military authorities.
The U.S. Probation Officer will fully explain the conditions of release to the offender once he or she is released to community supervision. There are two types of conditions that can be imposed by the Court. They are mandatory and discretionary.1 Mandatory conditions apply to every offender sentenced to a term of supervision. Discretionary conditions are used by the Court to provide the probation officer with the authority to address risk related issues specific to a particular case and can include such conditions as home detention, substance abuse or mental health treatment among others. To view a detailed description of the standard conditions normally imposed by this Court along with additional information regarding the supervision process, please click on the link to the Orientation Manual in this section.
The Supervision Unit of the U.S. Probation Office’s main responsibility is the protection of the public through proactive risk control supervision techniques designed to detect and deter any further criminal behavior of the offender. The probation office uses a two-pronged approach in exercising their statutory responsibility. The officers utilize a combination of controlling and correctional strategies to deal with the risks related to a specific case and to bring about a positive change in the offender’s behavior, maximizing the offender’s potential for success during the supervision process and beyond.
Conditions of supervision may be modified during the course of supervision to address new issues that have arisen. Offenders who do not abide by the conditions of supervision are brought back to the Court where a determination is made whether additional conditions need to be put in place or whether, due to the nature of the non-compliant behavior, removing the offender from the community and returning the offender to incarceration is warranted.
1. Mandatory and discretionary conditions apply to offenders placed on probation or supervised release by the U.S. District Judge at the time of sentencing. The U.S. Parole Commission and military authorities have their own set of conditions and, for the most part, are very similar to those imposed by the Court.