Parole Hearing (02:18)
Of the 2.2 million people who are incarcerated, 5% receive life sentences; supervised parole reduces recidivism rates. In Waterbury, members of the parole board gather to determine if two inmates are eligible for parole. Evidence taken into consideration includes police reports, testimony, letters, and sentencing hearing statements.
Alvin Crawford's Hearing (02:30)
The parole board asks Crawford questions about the events of December 28th, his motivation behind committing the crime, and why he believes he deserves parole. Erica Tindill suspends the video conference to deliberate in private. If granted, Crawford will receive an early release.
Donald Perry's Story (02:58)
Perry served 30 years of a life sentence for multiple armed robberies. In 2001, the parole board granted Perry parole; the former convict advocated for the homeless and went back to school to obtain a college degree. In 2011, police found stolen goods in Perry's car and his probation was revoked.
Parole Board Decision: Tindill and Perry (02:58)
Tindill states that high and low-risk offenders are easy decisions, but the inmates in the middle are difficult. The parole board denies Crawford's parole because of the probability of reoffending. Perry pleads for release at the revocation hearing, but it is denied.
Changes to the System (04:10)
William Carbone discusses reforms that the Connecticut Parole board implemented in 2008 after the Petit murders. Dave Altimari describes the criminal backgrounds of the killers and why both were granted parole. The Judicial Electronic Bridge (JEB) provides access to offender information for corrections and parole boards.
Free Perry (05:04)
Holly Richardson created a grassroots organization to free Perry. Elaine Arsenault discusses coping with notoriety. Perry describes the events of August 3rd when he picked up a hitchhiker and police found stolen goods in his car.
Board Reluctant to Parole (02:31)
Dominic Cinelli murdered a police officer after he was paroled. After the governor fired the board, the amount of inmates paroled plummeted. In 2013, Perry was granted another parole hearing— he would not receive the decision for eight months.
Probability of Re-offense (00:0-1495)
Tindill worries whenever she learns of a parolee committing a crime. The Statewide Collaborative Offender Risk Evaluation System (SCORES) evaluates the accused, convicts, and parolees. The Connecticut State Parole Board denies Walter Wright's case for parole.
Revoking Parole (03:34)
Josh Wall explains why the parole board revoked Perry's parole despite being acquitted of the crime. On September 26th, the board decided that Perry could be paroled, but he must serve an additional punitive year in prison. No member of the board believed his story, but determined he was not a risk.
Perry's Upcoming Release (02:03)
Elaine Arsenault will pick up Perry and prepares for his arrival. Perry calls Arsenault; he worries he will not be able to sleep.
Perry Released (03:58)
Arsenault and Holly Richardson travel to the jail to pick up Perry. The prison denies Joe Berlinger access to interview Perry or film his release. Berlinger interviews Perry on the side of the road.
Joshua Strachman Parole Hearing (03:25)
The parole board interviews Joshua Stachman who started taking classes to obtain his GED while in prison. The members agree to parole, provided he stays in a halfway house and completes the "Good Intentions and Bad Choices" program prior to his release. Tindill explains that with proper supervision Strachman can overcome criminal behavior.
Lifetime of Parole (03:37)
Perry must wear a GPS monitor at all times for the next three years. As a child, he wished he had an advocate and wants to help others. Tindill describes how she likes to treat the inmates she oversees.
Credits: Parole: High Risks, High Stakes—The System with Joe Berlinger (00:04)
Credits: Parole: High Risks, High Stakes—The System with Joe Berlinger
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