During recent years, the public has expressed its concerns that offender rights should be balanced by victim rights. This has been demonstrated by passage of a number of laws on behalf of victims which impact upon this department. Victims of violent crimes and families of children who have been abused are notified prior to an inmate’s being granted a pardon or parole by the Board. The victim’s right to be present at the scheduled hearing and to express their concerns in person and in writing to the Board is provided by law. Written information may be sent to the board via U.S. mail or email to email@example.com.
The Bureau offers victims and victims’ families a place they can turn to for answers before and after the pardon/parole hearing. The victim’s
service officer goal is to assist victims so they can fully participate in the pardon/parole hearing process. Understanding your rights as a victim of crime is important for you and your family.
Open Public Meetings
These meetings are commonly referred to by most of us as parole hearings, and are held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays beginning at 8:00 a.m. The hearings are informal and are held for one inmate at a time with his/her family, friends, lawyer, pastor, or whoever wishes to attend, sitting on the right side of the room. The victim and/or victim’s family, or attendees sit on the left side of the room. Those appearing on behalf of the inmate are allowed to speak first and give their reasons as to why they think the inmate should be paroled. The victims and their supporters then give their reasons why the inmate should not be paroled. The inmate or defendant will not be present during the parole hearing.
What are Your Rights?
As a victim of crime in Alabama, you have a Constitutional right to be treated with fairness, respect, dignity, and to be informed and present throughout the criminal justice process. All state, county, and municipal justice agencies and courts in Alabama are required to perform certain duties to ensure your rights are upheld. Some of these rights are:
- A list of local emergency and crisis services
- The name and telephone number of the officer and law enforcement agency handling your report
- The procedural steps in a criminal prosecution
- The availability of victim’s compensation benefits
- A listing of your rights as a victim, including a form to help you assert your rights
- The existence and eligibility requirements of restitution and compensation
- A recommended procedure in case you are subjected to threats or intimidation as a victim
- Notification of all criminal proceedings and charges filed against the defendant and the right to be present at all proceedings
- An explanation of the pre-sentence report and the right to make a written or oral statement to the probation officer
- Notification of date, time, and location of any sentencing hearing and to present any information at a sentencing proceedings
- Information regarding the return of any property taken during the course of the investigation
- Be provided the date of conviction, acquittal, or dismissal of charges against the defendant and the sentence imposed
- Refuse an interview or other communication with the defendant, their attorney, or anyone acting on their behalf
- The status and result of any post-conviction appeal
- Be supplied a waiting area separate from the defendant, his/her relatives, and defense witnesses (if available and practical)
- Submit a statement to be entered into the offender’s records
- Notification of release from prison, on bond, escape, re-arrest, or death of the defendant
To register for notifications, please contact The Bureau’s Victim Unit:
Director of Victim Services
100 Capitol Commerce Boulevard
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
Reminder: Keep our unit updated with your current contact information.
Ashley Harbin | Director of Victim Services
The Director of Victim Services is responsible for oversight of all operations that assist victims of crime. Ashley Harbin became the Director of Victim Services in December 2019.
Operations include but are not limited to assisting victims with pardon and parole hearings, preparing them for hearings, educating about the crime system and informing individuals about their Constitutional rights. Connecting victims to community services, such as the Alabama Office of Prosecution Services, Victims of Crime and Leniency, Alabama Crime Victims’ Compensation Commission and HERO are also provided.
Prior to joining the Bureau, Harbin served as a Victim Services Officer for the Attorney General from 2011-2019. Beginning in 2006, she served five years as the Executive Assistant to the Attorney General. Harbin graduated from Auburn University at Montgomery, earning her Bachelor of Science in Psychology.
Supporting victims of crime is personally valued to Harbin. She participates at events such as Crime Victims’ Rights Week and serves on the Victim Notification Task Force. A proud Alabama native, Harbin is married and has two children.
Alabama Crime Victims’ Compensation Commission
Alabama Department of Corrections
1-855-WE-R-ADOC (Toll Free Number)
Alabama Department of Human Resources
Alabama Department of Senior Services
Alabama’s Coalition Against Domestic Violence
1.800.650.6522 or 1.800.799.7233
Alabama‘s Coalition Against Rape
Mothers Against Drunk Driving (Alabama)
National Center for Victims of Crime
National Children’s Advocacy Center
National Domestic Violence Hotline
National Organization for Victim Assistance
National Teen Dating Abuse Hotline
Victim Connect Resource Center
Victims of Crime and Leniency (VOCAL)