Parole; application of statutes. (SB809)

Introduced By

Sen. Joe Morrissey (D-Richmond) with support from co-patrons Del. Lamont Bagby (D-Richmond), Del. Patrick Hope (D-Arlington), and Del. Ibraheem Samirah (D-Herndon)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Read the Bill »


02/03/2020: Incorporated into Another Bill


01/08/2020Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/08/20 20103823D
01/08/2020Referred to Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services
01/17/2020Rereferred from Rehabilitation and Social Services (12-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
01/17/2020Rereferred to Judiciary
01/24/2020Assigned Juciciary sub: Criminal Law
01/24/2020Assigned Judiciary sub: Criminal Law
01/29/2020Impact statement from DPB (SB809)
02/03/2020Incorporated by Judiciary (SB91-Edwards) (15-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)


Skii watah writes:

I support this bill to reinstate parole in Va.. I fully understand the seriousness of the issue at hand, and this decision is one that reflects directly on our representatives. This is not a judgement call, but clearly a matter of what is right.
The crime rate had already begun to drop before the Violent Offender Incarceration and Truth-In-Sentencing Incentive (VOI/TIS) Formula Grant Program was enacted abolishing parole in 1995 in order to receive the above mentioned grant money. The main condition or requirement for a state to qualify for the money was, ensure that violent offenders serve no less than 85 percent of their imposed sentence regardless of displaying a decade of good behavior after being rehabilitated and reformed; and regardless of the fact that VA was and still is ranked amongst the states with the lowest crime and recidivism rates in the country. Which brings forth the question whether or not parole should have been abolished from the beginning? How can a state that rank so low nationally in crime,rank so high in incarceration and spending on Incarceration?
We have many men and women sitting in our prisons whom have taken it upon themselves to learn trades and take college courses and remain infraction free for more than a decade in a system that offers no reward for such, completely changed their lives because that's what they wanted to do. Those who leave prison with an education has more than 43 percent lower odds of recidivism. Less than 1 percent of violent offenders return to prison, it is mainly the addicts that recidivate.
As an employee with the VA. Department of Corrections for more than 25 years I witness first-hand that their are a lot of men and women in prison that should have been released a long time ago.#

Jerikah Badu writes:

I support this bill to be passed because for too long families has been broken for years... The offenders are treated as if they are livestock in Virginia rather than human beings I said that to say this I’m not saying prison should be a walk in a park but it supposed to rehabilitate the inmate in order to return to society to start again... a lot of inmates who been incarcerated over a decade is not in the same mindset they were in when they arrive they put in the work to make a change they put in work to complete treatment programs vocational trades in order to get work when release but what’s the use of that if they release 60 or 70 years old that’s damn near retirement age life is in the end stage what life to live will they have left.. it’s not fair for the ones who turned their life around to be kept there with no hope of coming home.. it’s not fair to miss their children growing up and are an adult when they come it don’t take majority of the offenders to be incarcerated for those years for a first offense and mostly are those of color who is wrapped up in the system they created...its like slavery all over again. I feel Virginia really doesn’t care about Justice they care about earning grants and money over these inmates not caring how they are destroying families. Forcing people of color to admit to a crime they didn’t commit I have 2 young men in my family who is incarcerated for nothing and being held because they won’t take a plea to admit a crime they didn’t do.... it’s a wicked system and we had enough of our men our fathers and brothers, uncles , cousins being ripped from their family because of Virginia greed over money and hatred of people of color.... tired of so many broken homes and they wouldn’t even give them a second chance And not at 50,60, or 70 years old when they supposed to be a grandma or grandpa either.. right now release them offenders who haven’t had any infractions in over 10 years maintain employment complete treatment programs vocational training those who have good reports from counselors release those people why are they still being held if they are rehabilitated and not a threat to themselves or others majority of offenders are those with mental illness and addiction.. Free those people who are on the right path let them go hug on there aging parents half grown kids and grandchildren even give them a chance nobody is perfect no one who is you to judge on gets to have a life or not cause you can’t say it’s about serving justice cause I doubt that.... Virginia Commonwealth State is injustice in so many ways.