COMMUNITY SUPERVISION & CORRECTIONS DEPARTMENT
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice is comprised of three branches; the Institutional Division manages state prisons; the Parole Division supervises offenders released from prison; and the Community Justice Assistance Division oversees local community supervision and corrections departments (CSCD’s). CSCD’s provide community corrections services to criminal offenders 17 years of age and older who are placed on community supervision by the courts of the jurisdiction. Standards for CSCD’s are established by the Texas Board of Criminal Justice and monitored by the Community Justice Assistance Division. Local departments are established by the district judges and are managed by a director appointed by the judges. The counties served provide office space, furniture and utilities.
Offenders are placed on community supervision for a set number of months or years by the judge of the sentencing court within the limits set by law. The judge also imposes conditions of supervision the offender must obey. Some of the conditions usually required include:
Do not violate the law, do not use alcohol or drugs, avoid persons or places of bad reputation, report regularly to your supervision officer, remain employed, do not move without permission, obey a curfew, pay a monthly supervision fee to the CSCD, pay fine and court costs, make restitution to the victim, complete a set number of community service hours, obtain a GED, and participate in any program of rehabilitation that is needed.
If an offender violates one or more of the conditions of supervision, the supervising officer makes a written report to the appropriate prosecutor. The prosecutor may cause the offender to appear before the sentencing court for a hearing. After hearing the evidence and testimony, the judge determines whether or not the offender is in violation of the conditions set forth in the order granting community supervision. If the offender is found to be in violation of the order of the court, the judge has numerous options for dealing with the violation. The judge may revoke the offender’s community supervision and require the offender to serve the original sentence in jail or the penitentiary. The judge may continue the offender’s supervision and impose an alternative sanction. Such a sanction could include serving jail time or being sent to an alternative sanction facility such as a boot camp, restitution center, residential facility for substance abuse treatment, or other alternative sanction facility. The judge could also continue the offender on supervision and order him/her to participate in any program designed to rehabilitate the offender.
Most offenders complete their term of supervision successfully. Statewide the failure rate is less than 10 percent. When the offender completes the term of supervision successfully, they are discharged from supervision. After discharge, they may apply to the sentencing court to have their original conviction set aside.