The latest federal court ruling (pdf) on the subject, a preliminary injunction issued today barring assignment of "Condition X" to parolee Buddy Yeary, not only continues to maintain that the BPP can't apply sex-offender conditions without due process, it informs us that a new BPP policy to assign those conditions before parole, described here, will similarly fail to pass constitutional muster, though that issue wasn't squarely before the court.
Wrote Judge Lee Yeakel, "There can be no doubt that the law is well-settled in this regard: The imposition of sex-offender conditions on a defendant who has not been convicted of a sex offense - whether a prisoner or a parolee - without first providing the defendant with certain due-process protections is unconstitutional."
As reported in this Grits post, in the wake of prior court rulings that they couldn't assign "Condition X" without holding a hearing giving the parolee an opportunity to contest it, the parole board implemented a new policy (pdf) aiming to apply "Condition X" prior to release instead of after the prisoner has been paroled.
Judge Yeakel's latest ruling, though, says a hearing is required whether the offender is "a prisoner or a parolee." I don't know how long the Board of Pardons and Paroles will continue to flout these federal rulings, but at some point one of these case will get to the court in a procedural posture that lets the judge order hearings across the board instead of only for this or that individual defendant. As Yeakel said, the law is clear; what's unclear is why the BPP won't acquiesce and begin to follow it now that it's been clearly, repeatedly explained to them.
See related Grits posts:
- Parole board continues shell game over due process for sex-offender conditions
- Federal judge bench slaps parole board over applying sex-offender conditions without due process
- Did parole board dawdling create civil liability for Texas on sex-offender conditions?
- New parole rules require due process for sex-offender conditions
- Court: Parole board can't impose sex-offender conditions without evidentiary hearing
- Judge Sam Sparks: Parole chief Rissie Owens is "indecisive, insensitive, inattentive, incompetent, stupid, (or) weak-kneed"
- Federal judge: Parole board may have improperly labeled thousands as 'sex offenders'
- Federal litigation seeks individualized review of sex-offender cases by parole board