RRRI or How to avoid the parole board: Recidivism Risk Reduction Incentive

Filed under: Criminal Law, News Tags: by Steven F. Fairlie @ September 27, 2009

What is RRRI?  How does it get Pennsylvania prisoners out of jail early, without seeing the parole board?

Recidivism Risk Reduction Incentive (RRRI) (pronounced triple R I) is a new sentencing program that gives mostly non-violent offenders an opportunity to get out of jail early, without meeting Pennsylvania’s parole board (which is notoriously slow and problematic) if they comply with a host of requirements.

If you have any prior history or open cases involving violent crimes, including personal injury crimes, sex crimes, and Megan’s Law offenses, you are ineligible as a a matter of law, unless your attorney can convince the District Attorney to waive the ineligibility. The program is agreed to at the time of sentencing, and requires that you serve a state sentence and be supervised by the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.

If you are deemed RRRI eligible by your trial judge, you get past classification and go to your base state correctional institution, you will be given a list of classes and tasks to perform to become a RRRI candidate. If you do these things, you will be eligible at your RRRI parole date.

The benefit is that you will be paroled much earlier than you would if you were not serving a RRRI sentence.  If you receive a sentence of 3-6 years or less, your RRRI minimum will be 3/4 the value of your minimum. If your sentence is greater than 3-6 years, your RRRI minimum will be 5/6 of your minimum.   Not only are you eligible to be paroled to the street earlier this way, but you will be “presumptively paroled” on that date.   This means that you don’t have to wait for the parole board to get around to see you (which can happen months after your eligibility date) nor risk that they won’t parole you once they finally so see you (a fate that is very common).

The effect of the RRRI program is that a prisoner sentenced to 3-6 years in a state correctional institution, who previously might have served 39 months or much more, will now be automatically paroled at 27 months, for a discount of a year or more of his life.

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