Offenders who have progressed through the graded tier system and who are deemed therapeutically ready can be recommended to IBOR for participation in Patuxent's conditional release program. This program consists of gradual steps toward return of the offender to the community and provides the staff with opportunities to assess the offender's adjustment as structure is gradually decreased.
After one year on the fourth level an offender is eligible for recommendation to the Institutional Board of Review (IBOR) for the conditional release program. Consideration is not automatic; it is the result of a consensus of an offender's Remediation Management team (RMT) treatment staff that more intensive study of the offender's progress and adjustment is warranted. Also, IBOR may, at any time, direct an offender's Unit to conduct an evaluation in regard to a status change for an offender. Such evaluations may result in either a recommendation for pre-release status, a recommendation that the offender has reached maximum benefit from the program and should be returned to DOC, or a reformulation of treatment approach without a recommendation for change in status. In no case is IBOR bound to support the Unit's recommendation.
In considering an offender for a status change, the Unit completes a review of the offender's history and progress within the program, a complete psychiatric examination, and an independent psychological assessment by a psychologist not on the RMT that the offender is assigned to, and a review of all relevant risk factors for future criminal behavior. These findings are presented at a pre-status clinical conference. In this conference, the treatment unit meets with the evaluating psychologist and the associate directors for psychiatry and behavioral sciences. After this clinical review, the Unit meets with the offender for further evaluation and then may formulate a recommendation to IBOR or a revised treatment plan. Only if the recommendation is in favor of additional status for the offender does the Unit schedule an IBOR appearance date with the Secretary of IBOR (the associate director of behavioral sciences). The Secretary of IBOR then notifies the offender's victim(s) or the victim(s) representatives of the offender's pending hearing before IBOR and solicits a response. These procedures are repeated prior to IBOR's deliberation in regard to each step in the conditional release program.
The conditional release program consists of gradual, hierarchical steps toward the offender's return to the community and provide the staff with opportunities to assess the offender's adjustment as external structure is gradually decreased. Steps in the program include:
- Accompanied Day Leaves, in which Patuxent Institution staff accompany the offender on an approved day leave;
- Work/School Release Status, in which the offender is permitted to work or attend school in the community during the day while residing in Patuxent Institution's Reentry facility; and
- Community Parole, in which the offender establishes an independent living situation in the State.
Failure on the part of the offender to fully comply with the conditions of any pre-release status is grounds for sanctions against the offender. These sanctions range from revocation of status, return to Patuxent Institution for incarceration, or removal from the treatment program. The Board of Review also may impose any additional monitoring procedures, restrictions, limitations, or requirements on the offender that the Board of Review views as consistent with ensuring public safety and furthering the therapeutic goals of the treatment programs.
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