28 CFR 2.80 - Guidelines for D.C. Code offenders.
(1)Applicability in general. Except as provided below, the guidelines in paragraphs (b)-(n) of this section apply at an initial hearing or rehearing conducted for any prisoner.
(2)Reparole decisions. Reparole decisions shall be made in accordance with § 2.81.
(3)Youth offenders. A prisoner sentenced under the Youth Rehabilitation Act shall be considered for parole under these guidelines pursuant to paragraph (a)(1) of this section, except that the prisoner shall be given rehearings in accordance with the schedule at § 2.75(a)(2)(ii) and the prisoner's program achievements shall be considered in the parole release decision in accordance with § 2.106. The guidelines at paragraphs (k)-(m) of this section for awarding superior program achievement and subtracting the award in determining the total guideline range shall not apply.
(4) Prisoners considered under the guidelines of the former District of Columbia Board of Parole. For a prisoner whose initial hearing was held before August 5, 1998, the Commission shall render its decision by reference to the guidelines of the former D.C. Board of Parole in effect on August 4, 1998. However, when a decision outside such guidelines has been made by the Board, or is ordered by the Commission, the Commission may determine the appropriateness and extent of the departure by comparison with the guidelines of § 2.80. The Commission may also correct any error in the calculation of the D.C. Board's guidelines.
(5) Prisoners given initial hearings under the guidelines in effect from August 5, 1998 through December 3, 2000 (the guidelines formerly found in 28 CFR 2.80, Appendix to § 2.80 (2000)). For a prisoner given an initial hearing under the § 2.80 guidelines in effect from August 5, 1998 through December 3, 2000, the guidelines in paragraphs (b)-(n) of this section shall be applied retroactively subject to the provisions of paragraph (o) of this section.
(b)Guidelines. In determining whether an eligible prisoner should be paroled, the Commission shall apply the guidelines set forth in this section. The guidelines assign numerical values to pre-and post-incarceration factors. Decisions outside the guidelines may be made, where warranted, pursuant to paragraph (n) of this section.
(c)Salient factor score and criminal record. The prisoner's Salient Factor Score shall be determined by reference to the Salient Factor Scoring Manual in § 2.20. The Salient Factor Score is used to assist the Commission in assessing the probability that an offender will live and remain at liberty without violating the law. The prisoner's record of criminal conduct (including the nature and circumstances of the current offense) shall be used to assist the Commission in determining the probable seriousness of the recidivism that is predicted by the Salient Factor Score.
(d)Disciplinary infractions. The Commission shall assess whether the prisoner has been found guilty of committing significant disciplinary infractions while under confinement for the current offense.
(1) The Commission shall assess whether the prisoner has demonstrated ordinary or superior achievement in the area of prison programs, industries, or work assignments while under confinement for the current offense. Superior program achievement means program achievement that is beyond the level that the prisoner might ordinarily be expected to accomplish. Credit for program achievement may be granted regardless of whether the guidelines for disciplinary infractions have been applied for misconduct during the same period. The guidelines in this section presume that the prisoner will have ordinary program achievement.
(2) In the case of a prisoner who has declined to participate in institutional programming, a decision in the upper half of the applicable guideline range generally will be warranted, except that in the case of a prisoner who has a base point score of 3 or less, or who has a criminal record involving violence or sexual offenses and who has not participated in available programming to address a potential for criminal behavior of a violent or sexual nature, a decision above the guidelines may be warranted.
(f)Base point score. Add the applicable points from Categories I-III of the Point Assignment Table to determine the base point score.
Point Assignment Table
|CATEGORY I: RISK OF RECIDIVISM (Salient Factor Score)|
|10-8 (Very Good Risk)||0|
|7-6 (Good Risk)||1|
|5-4 (Fair Risk)||2|
|3-0 (Poor Risk)||3|
|CATEGORY II: CURRENT OR PRIOR VIOLENCE (Type of Risk)|
|A. Violence in current offense, and any felony violence in two or more prior offenses||4|
|B. Violence in current offense, and any felony violence in one prior offense||3|
|C. Violence in current offense||2|
|D. No violence in current offense and any felony violence in two or more prior offenses||2|
|E. Possession of firearm in current offense if current offense is not scored as a crime of violence||2|
|F. No violence in current offense and any felony violence in one prior offense||1|
|CATEGORY III: DEATH OF VICTIM OR HIGH LEVEL VIOLENCE|
|A. Current offense involved violence (high level violence or other violence) with death of victim resulting||3|
|B. Current offense involved attempted murder, conspiracy to murder, solicitation to murder, or any willful violence in which the victim survived despite death having been the most probable result at the time the offense was committed||2|
|C. Current offense involved high level violence (other than the behaviors described above)||1|
|BASE POINT SCORE (Total of Categories I-III)|
(g)Definitions and instructions for application of point assignment table -
(1)Salient factor score means the salient factor score set forth at § 2.20.
(2)High level violence in Category III means any of the following offenses -
(ii) Voluntary manslaughter;
(iii) Arson of a building in which a person other than the offender was present or likely to be present at the time of the offense;
(iv) Forcible rape or forcible sodomy (first degree sexual abuse);
(v) Kidnapping, hostage taking, or any armed abduction of a victim during a carjacking or other offense;
(vi) Burglary of a residence while armed with any weapon if a victim was in the residence during the offense;
(vii) Obstruction of justice through violence or threats of violence;
(viii) Any offense involving sexual abuse of a person less than sixteen years of age;
(ix) Mayhem, malicious disfigurement, or any offense defined as other violence in paragraph (g)(4) of this section that results in serious bodily injury as defined in paragraph (g)(3) of this section;
(x) Any offense defined as other violence in paragraph (g)(4) of this section in which the offender intentionally discharged a firearm;
(3)Serious bodily injury means bodily injury that involves a substantial risk of death, unconsciousness, extreme physical pain, protracted and obvious disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty.
(4)Other violence means any of the following felony offenses that does not qualify as high level violence
(ii) Residential burglary;
(iii) Felony assault;
(iv) Felony offenses involving a threat, or risk, of bodily harm;
(v) Felony offenses involving sexual abuse or sexual contact;
(vi) Involuntary manslaughter (excluding negligent homicide).
(5) Attempts, conspiracies, and solicitations shall be scored by reference to the substantive offense that was the object of the attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation; except that Category IIIA shall apply only if death actually resulted.
(6)Current offense means any criminal behavior that is either:
(i) Reflected in the offense of conviction, or
(ii) Is not reflected in the offense of conviction but is found by the Commission to be related to the offense of conviction (i.e., part of the same course of conduct as the offense of conviction). In probation violation cases, the current offense includes both the original offense and the violation offense, except that the original offense shall be scored as a prior conviction (with a prior commitment) rather than as part of the current offense, if the prisoner served more than six months in prison for the original offense before his probation commenced
(7) Category IIE applies whenever a firearm is possessed by the offender during, or is used by the offender to commit, any offense that is not scored under Category II(A-D). Category IIE also applies when the current offense is felony unlawful possession of a firearm and there is no other current offense. Possession for purposes of Category IIE includes constructive possession.
(8) Category IIIA applies if the death of a victim is:
(i) Caused by the offender, or
(ii) Caused by an accomplice and the killing was planned or approved by the offender in furtherance of a joint criminal venture.
(h)Determining the base guideline range. Determine the base guideline range for adult prisoners from the following table:
|Base point score||Base guideline range (months)|
|3 or less||0|
(i)Months to parole eligibility. Determine the total number of months until parole eligibility.
(j)Guideline range for disciplinary infractions. Determine the applicable guideline range from § 2.36 for any significant disciplinary infractions since the beginning of confinement on the current offense in the case of an initial hearing, and since the last hearing in the case of a rehearing. If there are no significant disciplinary infractions, this step is not applicable.
(k)Guidelines for superior program achievement. If superior program achievement is found, the award for superior program achievement shall be one-third of the number of months during which the prisoner demonstrated superior program achievement. The award is determined on the basis of all time in confinement on the current offense in the case of an initial hearing, and on the basis of time in confinement since the last hearing in the case of a rehearing. If superior program achievement is not found, this step is not applicable.
When superior program achievement is found, it is presumed that the award will be based on the total number of months since the beginning of confinement on the current offense in the case of an initial hearing, or since the last hearing in the case of a rehearing. Where, however, the Commission determines that the prisoner did not have superior program achievement during the entire period, it may base its decision solely on the number of months during which the prisoner had superior program achievement.
(l)Determining the total guideline range at an initial hearing. At an initial hearing
(1) Add together the minimum of the base point guideline range (from paragraph (h) of this section), the number of months required by the prisoner's parole eligibility date (from (i) of this section), and the minimum of the guideline range for disciplinary infractions, if applicable (from paragraph (j) of this section). Then subtract the award for superior program achievement, if applicable (from paragraph (k) of this section). The result is the minimum of the Total Guideline Range.
(2) Add together the maximum of the base point guideline range (from paragraph (h) of this section), the number of months required by the prisoner's parole eligibility date (from paragraph (i) of this section), and the maximum of the guideline range for disciplinary infractions, if applicable (from paragraph (j) of this section). Then subtract the award for superior program achievement, if applicable (from paragraph (k) of this section). The result is the maximum of the Total Guideline Range.
(m)Determining the total guideline range at a reconsideration hearing. At a reconsideration hearing -
(1) Add together the minimum of the Total Guideline Range from the previous hearing, and the minimum of the guideline range for disciplinary infractions since the previous hearing, if applicable (from paragraph (j) of this section). Then subtract the award for superior program achievement, if applicable (from paragraph (k) of this section). The result is the minimum of the Total Guideline Range for the current hearing.
(2) Add together the maximum of the Total Guideline Range from the previous hearing, and the maximum of the guideline range for disciplinary infractions since the previous hearing, if applicable (from paragraph (j) of this section). Then subtract the award for superior program achievement since the previous hearing, if applicable (from paragraph (k) of this section). The result is the maximum of the Total Guideline Range for the current hearing.
(n)Decisions outside the guidelines.
(1) The Commission may, in unusual circumstances, grant or deny parole to a prisoner notwithstanding the guidelines. Unusual circumstances are case-specific factors that are not fully taken into account in the guidelines, and that are relevant to the grant or denial of parole. In such cases, the Commission shall specify in the notice of action the specific factors that it relied on in departing from the applicable guideline or guideline range. If the prisoner is deemed to be a poorer or more serious risk than the guidelines indicate, the Commission shall determine what Base Point Score would more appropriately fit the prisoner's case, and shall render its initial and rehearing decisions as if the prisoner had that higher Base Point Score. It is to be noted that, in some cases, an extreme level of risk presented by the prisoner may make it inappropriate for the Commission to contemplate a parole at any hearing without a significant change in the prisoner's circumstances.
(2) Factors that may warrant a decision above the guidelines include, but are not limited to, the following:
(i)Poorer parole risk than indicated by salient factor score. The offender is a poorer parole risk than indicated by the salient factor score because of -
(A) Unusually persistent failure under supervision (pretrial release, probation, or parole);
(B) Unusually persistent history of criminally related substance (drug or alcohol) abuse and resistance to treatment efforts; or
(C) Unusually extensive prior record (sufficient to make the offender a poorer risk than the “poor” prognosis category).
(ii)More serious parole risk. The offender is a more serious parole risk than indicated by the total point score because of -
(A) Prior record of violence more extensive or serious than that taken into account in the guidelines;
(B) Current offense demonstrates extraordinary criminal sophistication, criminal professionalism in the employment of violence or threats of violence, or leadership role in instigating others to commit a serious offense;
(C) Unusual cruelty to the victim (beyond that accounted for by scoring the offense as high level violence), or predation upon extremely vulnerable victim;
(D) Unusual propensity to inflict unprovoked and potentially homicidal violence, as demonstrated by the circumstances of the current offense; or
(E) Additional serious offense(s) committed after (or while on bond or fugitive status from) current offense that show unusual capacity for sustained, repeated violent criminal activity.
(3) Factors that may warrant a decision below the guidelines include, but are not limited to, the following:
(i)Better parole risk than indicated by salient factor score. The offender is a better parole risk than indicated by the salient factor score because of (applicable only to offenders who are not already in the very good risk category) -
(A) A prior criminal record resulting exclusively from minor offenses;
(B) A substantial crime-free period in the community for which credit is not already given on the Salient Factor Score;
(C) A change in the availability of community resources leading to a better parole prognosis;
(A) Unusually lengthy period of incarceration on the minimum sentence (in relation to the seriousness of the offense and prior record) that warrants an initial parole determination as if the offender were being considered at a rehearing;
(B) Substantial period in custody on other sentence(s) sufficient to warrant a finding in paragraph (n)(3) of this section; or
(C) Clearly exceptional program achievement.
(o) (1) A prisoner who is eligible under the criteria of paragraph (o)(2) may receive a parole determination using the 1987 guidelines of the former District of Columbia Board of Parole (hereinafter “the 1987 Board guidelines”).
(2) A prisoner must satisfy the following criteria to obtain a determination using the 1987 Board guidelines:
(i) The prisoner committed the offense of conviction after March 3, 1985 and before August 5, 1998;
(ii) The prisoner is not incarcerated as a parole violator;
(iii) The prisoner received his initial hearing after August 4, 1998; and
(iv) The prisoner does not have a parole effective date, or a presumptive parole date before January 1, 2010.
(3) For a prisoner eligible for application of the 1987 Board guidelines, a hearing examiner shall first review the case on the record. If the hearing examiner recommends that the prisoner receive a parole effective date and the Commission concurs in the recommendation, the case shall not be scheduled for a hearing. If the hearing examiner does not recommend a parole effective date, a hearing shall be conducted on an appropriate hearing docket.
(4) At the hearing, the hearing examiner shall evaluate the prisoner's case using the 1987 Board guidelines, as if the prisoner were receiving an initial hearing. If appropriate, the hearing examiner shall evaluate the case using the 1987 Board guidelines for rehearings, revising the initial point score based on the prisoner's prison conduct record and program performance. The Commission shall use the former Board's policy guidelines in making its determinations under this paragraph, according to the policy guideline in effect at the time of the prisoner's offense.
(5) If the Commission denies parole after the hearing, and the prisoner received a presumptive parole date under the parole determination that preceded the hearing under this paragraph, the prisoner shall not forfeit the presumptive parole date unless the presumptive date is rescinded for institutional misconduct, new criminal conduct, or for new adverse information.
(1) A prisoner who is eligible under the criteria of paragraph (p)(2) of this section may receive a parole determination using the parole guidelines in the 1972 regulations of the former District of Columbia Board of Parole (9 DCMR section 105.1) (hereinafter “the 1972 Board guidelines”).
(2) A prisoner must satisfy the following criteria to obtain a determination using the 1972 Board guidelines:
(i) The prisoner committed the offense of conviction on or before March 3, 1985;
(ii) The prisoner is not incarcerated as a parole violator; and
(iii) The prisoner has not been granted a parole effective date.
(3) The granting of a parole is neither a constitutional or statutory requirement, and release to parole supervision by Commission action is not mandatory.
(4) Factors considered: Among others, the U.S. Parole Commission takes into account some of the following factors in making its determination as to parole:
(i) The offense, noting the nature of the violation, mitigating or aggravating circumstances and the activities and adjustment of the offender following arrest if on bond or in the community under any pre-sentence type arrangement.
(ii) Prior history of criminality, noting the nature and pattern of any prior offenses as they may relate to the current circumstances.
(iii) Personal and social history of the offender, including such factors as his family situation, educational development, socialization, marital history, employment history, use of leisure time and prior military experience, if any.
(iv) Physical and emotional health and/or problems which may have played a role in the individual's socialization process, and efforts made to overcome any such problems.
(v) Institutional experience, including information as to the offender's overall general adjustment, his ability to handle interpersonal relationships, his behavior responses, his planning for himself, setting meaningful goals in areas of academic schooling, vocational education or training, involvements in self-improvement activity and therapy and his utilization of available resources to overcome recognized problems. Achievements in accomplishing goals and efforts put forth in any involvements in established programs to overcome problems are carefully evaluated.
(vi) Community resources available to assist the offender with regard to his needs and problems, which will supplement treatment and training programs begun in the institution, and be available to assist the offender to further serve in his efforts to reintegrate himself back into the community and within his family unit as a productive useful individual.
(5) A prisoner who committed the offense of conviction on or before March 3, 1985 who is not incarcerated as a parole violator and is serving a maximum sentence of five years or more who was denied parole at their original hearing ordinarily will receive a rehearing one year after a hearing conducted by the U.S. Parole Commission. In all cases of rehearings, the U.S. Parole Commission may establish a rehearing date at any time it feels such would be proper, regardless of the length of sentence involved. No hearing may be set for more than five years from the date of the previous hearing.
(6) If a prisoner has been previously granted a presumptive parole date under the Commission's guidelines in paragraphs (b) through (m) of this section, the presumptive date will not be rescinded unless the Commission would rescind the date for one of the accepted bases for such action, i.e., new criminal conduct, new institutional misconduct, or new adverse information.
(7) Prisoners who have previously been considered for parole under the 1987 guidelines of the former DC Board of Parole will continue to receive consideration under those guidelines.