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Advise on a letter to the parole board

#1
What is the name of your state? Georgia

This is for my son who is a prisoner in GA.

I was convicted in a statutory rape case in Georgia (which was neither manipulative nor coercive in nature, a typical victimless crime scenario of this kind). I write this in anticipation of having to haggle a bit to get a favorable parole date. Parentheses were added to make the structure of the letter obvious.

I'd like comments and suggestions please.

--

To the Board of Pardons and Parole,

(Introduction)

My name is NC, I'm a prisoner at CS Prison. I'm writing this in response to your review of my case file and subsequent assignment of a lengthly projected parole month.


(Remorse)

I want you to know that the consequences of my actions do grieve me and I do think about it. I realize that my choices resulted in a family being broken and I wish there was something that I could do to fix that. I've never really been given the option for restorative justice thus far, and I've already tried the only other thing I could think of to do.


(Initiatives)

When I was in jail, in 2017, I wrote X's mother a letter giving account of myself. I'd thought that explaining myself and apologizing might bring some understanding and perhaps even healing through forgiveness, but with hindsight, I realize that it was a ridiculously naive, even if earnest, thing to do. By that point I certainly hadn't quite come to grips with reality and I still possessed a rather immature and defiantly self-righteous mind frame, full of personal delusions (which, being reflected in my writing, did little to help), but I really did want to apologize if that could help right things. I did mean what I said and intended, that I honestly was sorry for damaging her relationship with X and that I did want to try to do something to fix that. Needless to say, the message didn't come across like I hoped.

I suppose it was way too soon for something like that, for me and for her, but I did try to restore things the best of my ability, even if it came to nothing, and now I am doing all that I *can* do with the only option afforded to me. I recognize my faults that led to the choices I made that landed me here and I am taking initiative and doing my best to correct those. I've taken my classes (though I have to admit, they did leave a lot to be desired at times), I'm speaking with my counselors, I'm pursuing a postsecondary education, I'm making goals and plans... My efforts aren't idle.


(Danger of excess)

I do believe in the value of punitive justice, like confinement, for teaching lessons like dealing with consequences of bad choices, being accountable and responsible, and being humble, but I think there's a point where it does more harm than good when it's applied excessively or disproportionally. I'm sure there are still things for me to learn yet, but I don't think it's a good idea to push past what my resolve is capable of.

Prison is notorious for "institutionalizing" people who languish in it for too long. I don't want to develop a "prison" mentality because of the environment I'm in only to risk becoming a public charge when I am eventually released. Nobody benefits from that scenario. If I'm to be a productive citizen again upon release, realistically it would be best to push my punishment to the heart of the lesson and no further, and then let me prove myself under supervision.


(Commitment)

This has been the most challenging experience of my life and I really do not want a repeat of it. My goal is to be an ethical and law abiding citizen when released so that this, and any other crime, does not happen again, at least from me. My efforts towards overcoming my adversity should testify of that.


(Close)

In closing, I urge you to reconsider your decision regarding my parole projection to one that I am better equipped to handle and one that will give me a better chance at succeeding in society when I am released. Thank you for your time.


Sincerely,

NC
 
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#4
What is the name of your state? Georgia

This is for my son who is a prisoner in GA.

I was convicted in a statutory rape case in Georgia (which was neither manipulative nor coercive in nature, a typical victimless crime scenario of this kind). I write this in anticipation of having to haggle a bit to get a favorable parole date. Parentheses were added to make the structure of the letter obvious.

I'd like comments and suggestions please.

--

To the Board of Pardons and Parole,

(Introduction)

My name is N.C. I'm a prisoner at C.S. Prison. I'm writing this in response to your review of my case file and subsequent assignment of a lengthly projected parole month.


(Remorse)

I want you to know that the consequences of my actions do grieve me and I do think about it. I realize that my choices resulted in a family being broken and I wish there was something that I could do to fix that. I've never really been given the option for restorative justice thus far, and I've already tried the only other thing I could think of to do.


(Initiatives)

When I was in jail, in 2017, I wrote X's mother a letter giving account of myself. I'd thought that explaining myself and apologizing might bring some understanding and perhaps even healing through forgiveness, but with hindsight, I realize that it was a ridiculously naive, even if earnest, thing to do. By that point I certainly hadn't quite come to grips with reality and I still possessed a rather immature and defiantly self-righteous mind frame, full of personal delusions (which, being reflected in my writing, did little to help), but I really did want to apologize if that could help right things. I did mean what I said and intended, that I honestly was sorry for damaging her relationship with X and that I did want to try to do something to fix that. Needless to say, the message didn't come across like I hoped.

I suppose it was way too soon for something like that, for me and for her, but I did try to restore things the best of my ability, even if it came to nothing, and now I am doing all that I *can* do with the only option afforded to me. I recognize my faults that led to the choices I made that landed me here and I am taking initiative and doing my best to correct those. I've taken my classes (though I have to admit, they did leave a lot to be desired at times), I'm speaking with my counselors, I'm pursuing a postsecondary education, I'm making goals and plans... My efforts aren't idle.


(Danger of excess)

I do believe in the value of punitive justice, like confinement, for teaching lessons like dealing with consequences of bad choices, being accountable and responsible, and being humble, but I think there's a point where it does more harm than good when it's applied excessively or disproportionally. I'm sure there are still things for me to learn yet, but I don't think it's a good idea to push past what my resolve is capable of.

Prison is notorious for "institutionalizing" people who languish in it for too long. I don't want to develop a "prison" mentality because of the environment I'm in only to risk becoming a public charge when I am eventually released. Nobody benefits from that scenario. If I'm to be a productive citizen again upon release, realistically it would be best to push my punishment to the heart of the lesson and no further, and then let me prove myself under supervision.


(Commitment)

This has been the most challenging experience of my life and I really do not want a repeat of it. My goal is to be an ethical and law abiding citizen when released so that this, and any other crime, does not happen again, at least from me. My efforts towards overcoming my adversity should testify of that.


(Close)

In closing, I urge you to reconsider your decision regarding my parole projection to one that I am better equipped to handle and one that will give me a better chance at succeeding in society when I am released. Thank you for your time.


Sincerely,

N.C.
Your post was reported to have real names removed.

We can only provide general information and advice on this forum. Your son should seek out assistance from an attorney specializing in prisoner rights.

I can tell you that your son's letter as written is not likely to help him and is more likely to harm his chances for parole. He is not showing remorse or responsibility for the acts that led to his conviction and incarceration.

Good luck.
 
#7
The letter (or letters) as written are not going to help your son.

In fact, the letter you show here is a good example of what NOT to write to a parole board if looking for a "favorable" parole date.

Your son should consult with an attorney.
Much more to the point than what I was considering posting.

I was considering pointing out some of the flaws, but there were too many.
 
#8
He did the crime. He'll do the time. You'd better serve your son if you stop trying to sugar coat what he did to make it seem less horrible. I'm sure the victim and her family doesn't think it's a victimless crime. Shame on you for not accepting that what your son did was illegal and WRONG.
 

Shadowbunny

Queen of the Not-Rights
#9
I could point out several portions of your son's letter that would (should) torpedo his chances with the parole board. But it's BECAUSE of those portions that I can't, in good conscience, do so. Because your son's letter is evidence that he should stay exactly where he is. Until/unless the day comes that he truly understands why this letter is wrong, he NEEDS to be incarcerated.
 
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