Loved Ones of Prisoners

June 6, 2015 LOOP meeting

Kudos to Jerry Spatny and Tom Warmouth from the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections for their informative presentations! The information they shared is below.

Jerry Spatny, Deputy Warden Grafton

Jerry Spatny

Deputy Warden Grafton Correctional Institution


In addition to the many educational programs and community service opportunities that Grafton offers their inmates, Grafton is offering inmates and their families activities that they can enjoy together.

Upcoming Family Activities at Grafton

  • Day with Dad: August, the date is to be determined for a time that children can have an afternoon filled with activities with their Dad.
  • Craft Sale: an opportunity to buy crafts made by inmates
  • Rock the Yard: Tentative date on September 14. Different bands will perform at Grafton for inmates and their families. Proceeds go to Big Brothers and Big Sisters
  • Quarterly family member religious service; two members are allowed to come and worship with their loved one.
  • Picnic tables are available for visiting outside; offender must be at a Level 1 security.

Needed: Articles of Clothing

Upon release inmates need clothing for job interviews and casual wear. If you have any articles, you can drop off at the Planet 8 Bin located at 1641 S. Avon Belden Rd. Ties especially are needed.

Tom Warmouth, Justice Reinvestment Officer

Thomas Warmouth


Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections

Justice Reinvestment Officer (JRO)

Early Release Mechanisms - Judicial Release

There are some fundamental differences between traditional Judicial Release (2929.20) and the 80% Judicial Release (2967.19) process created in HB86.

The opportunity for Judicial Release is sometimes discussed at sentencing but not always. Judicial Release under either mechanism is at the discretion of the sentencing court. The courts can place the inmate on supervision with the county probation department for 1 to 5 yrs and can order a number of court conditions as well. There are restrictions and disqualifiers to both types which are spelled out in their respective revised codes. Some inmates are eligible for one or the other, neither, or both. Every case is different. Always seek the advice of a local attorney. Your local JRO can answer general questions about the 80% Judicial Release process.

Judicial Release (2929.20)

Requests for traditional Judicial Release (2929.20) come from motions filed either by the inmate pro se' or by the inmate's attorney. They must follow the time constraints listed below. The required days to be served are counted after the inmate is admitted to ODRC. Jail time credit does not count towards this requirement.

i. 30 days if non-mandatory time is less than 2 years

ii. 180 days if non-mandatory time is = 2 years to < 5years

iii. 4 years if non-mandatory time is = 5 years

iv. 5 years if non-mandatory time is > 5 years to = 10 years

v. Half of all non-mandatory time for any sentence >10 years

Last year, 2277 inmates were released under traditional Judicial Release methods.

80% Judicial Release (2967.19)

Requests for 80% Judicial Release (2967.19) process are assembled through a screening regimen in which Justice Reinvestment Officers (JRO) are deeply involved in establishing inmate suitability for this process. The screening process has several levels; and, there are a host of requirements and expectations that must be met. The final say as to whether the request is sent to the court or not falls with the ODRC Director's designee after reviewing the JRO's report and all inmate records. Only the top performing inmates will see this request get to their respective courts from the Director's office but all that are eligible by statute, policy and administrative rule are encouraged to apply.

Those inmates that are statutorily eligible must serve 80% of their stated term before they can be considered for the process. Jail credit does count towards this waiting period. Unlike 2929.20, mandatory terms are eligible in some instances.

The process is demanding. Last year, 1631 inmates were interviewed by 80% Judicial Release panels. Of those, 331 were sent to the Director's office. The Director's designee forwarded 231 to the court for consideration. The court's released 60 inmates on Judicial Release under this mechanism.

What does the inmate do to increase his/her chance of early release?

a. Get involved!! Take advantage of the many opportunities the prison offers to become part of a group or program. Certificates are awarded upon completion of an activity. These are recorded in the inmate’s record for review for early release.

b. Don’t get in trouble! Follow the rules, use constraint when dealing with other inmates and avoid getting written up!

After release from prison.

There are several release options whether early or at completion of sentence. Last year, 22,664 inmates were released from ODRC under some type of circumstance whether early or at max term. Of those, only 14,351 were released with some type of post incarceration supervision. That means 8,313 had no post incarceration contact with a probation or parole officer. If and on what type of supervision an inmate is placed, is based on statutory law, administrative rule, policy, parole board decisions, court intervention, and so on. Again, every case is different. Your local JRO can sometimes help explain those different types of supervision.

Currently, 491 Parole Officers supervise 34,745 offenders under various types of supervision that include Parole, Post Release Control, Community Control (probation), Judicial Release, Interstate Compact, Transitional Control, 80% Judicial Release, Risk Reduction, and Intervention in Lieu of Conviction.

Based on the above, you can see that many folks are without support when leaving prison and Parole Officers are handling caseloads in some instances of over 100 clients.

So, make sure to get involved and seek out all your local support networks like Reentry Coalitions, Citizen Circles, LOOP, other reentry collaboratives and restorative justice groups.

Important Dates

Linda Davis shared these Upcoming Events with us:

Date: Wednesday June 10, 2015 Time: 8:00 am to 3:00 pm

**Reentry Summit will be held at:

Training and Education Center (TEC)

1580 State Route 56 SW

London, Ohio 43140, 740-852-2454

Date: June 15th, Lake Erie Re-entry fair

Date: June 17th NERC reentry

Date: June 17th and 19th

Northeast Reintegration Center for females will be providing a Job/Resource Fair for the offenders on Wednesday June 17th and Friday June 19, 2015. I would like to invite your organization to attend and provide information about your company and the opportunity/services they provide to returning citizens and their families that assist reintegration back into society. Our institution is located at 2675 East 30th Street Cleveland, Oh. 44115 and the time of the event will be from12 noon until 3pm.

Date: July 29 The ODRC reentry Coalition