NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A state audit of the Board of Probation and Parole found that employees were making annual arrest checks of at least 82 dead parolees. The parolees had been dead anywhere from less than six months to more than 19 years.
In at least two cases, officers completed documents stating that the offenders were still alive.
The audit results were released on Monday.
In a statement on the audit, Comptroller Justin Wilson said, “If parole officers are supervising dead people, this is a waste of taxpayer dollars and makes us wonder about the supervision of parolees living in our communities.”
The audit also found that many probation and parole officers were not completing all the supervision requirements. There were many instances of no evidence that officers tried to contact offenders.
Note: News release below
News release from state comptroller’s office:
The Comptroller released today an audit of the state Board of Parole that found, at a minimum, annual arrest checks were completed on behalf of 82 parolees who had been dead for varying lengths of time, ranging from less than six months to more than 19 years. At worst, officers documented contact indicating offenders were still alive.
The audit also noted that many files managed by probation and parole officers were not in compliance with all board supervision requirements and were not regularly reviewed by management. In some cases, officers failed to complete or document their attempts to complete all of the required face-to-face contacts with parolees. In other cases, officers did not perform required home visits of regular offenders. The audit also showed some sex offenders tracked by GPS equipment had not been properly monitored.
“Inadequate supervision of offenders results in increased public risks and jeopardizes public safety,” Comptroller Justin P. Wilson said. “If parole officers are supervising dead people, this is a waste of taxpayer dollars and makes us wonder about the supervision of parolees living in our communities.”
Auditors also found a number of other issues with the Board of Parole’s operations, including questionable practices for providing notice of hearing decisions and upcoming board meetings.
To view the report online, go to: http://www.comptroller.tn.gov/repository/SA/pa12036.pdf