Parole Officer Harrassment?

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Latest post 04-19-2007 1:59 PM by Erik, Community Moderator (Admin). 8 replies.
  • 04-18-2007 3:34 PM

    Question [=?] Parole Officer Harrassment?

    Is there any legal recourse when a parollee is being harassed by their parole officer (in Montgomery County, PA):

    My husband is on parole for a DUI offense and has no history of drug use at all (and was never a drug user.) He is subject to random urine screenings for drugs and alcohol when he goes to see his PO.

    The first drug test, that morning he got up at 5am, and went to the PO office at 10am, after drinking a ton of coffee.

    She claims she got an "inconclusive" drug test result back, due to dilution. She told him this "clearly indicates he is doing something to his urine to mask drugs." He freaked out. He is not using drugs, no documented history of using drugs, and never a drug user. Ever.

    So he takes another drug test, but drank just as much coffee - basically, this woman didn't get the first urine of the day, she got about the 4th.

    So results come back again "diluted" and she starts leaving him PHONE MESSAGES - not even "call me" about how her supervisor is going to have to "force him into drug rehab." Then she started rambling on about low levels of createnine in his urine, and how that "clearly indicates tampering."

    Now, because I live on Planet Earth, I know that when any urine is diluted with water or coffee, the createnine levels come up low. This is why when your doctor needs to do a urine panel, he asks for the first urine of the day - if you are a dog, cat or human and have diluted urine, this will happen.

    We've offered for him to take a blood test (can't do that becuase you need to tell them about a specific drug for which to look) and a hair test (she claims she can't use body hair, but this is a lie, you need 1/2 inch of hair to do one.)

    Question: How do we make this harassment stop? Threatening somene like this with no proof is an abuse of power. Forcing us to pay for drug tests that will "be acceptable" is not my job. We've already paid a gazillion dollars in fines, and this is not our error. My husband has no license and can't go driving all over creation taking drug tests independently, which will not be honored, FYI.

    What can I do? If I did this nonsense at my job, I'd be immediately fired. I thought the whole point of parole was to help the person, not stress them out to the point that they revert back to substance abuse, or whatever their vice was.
  • 04-18-2007 5:50 PM In reply to

    re: Parole Officer Harrassment?

    "The first drug test, that morning he got up at 5am, and went to the PO office at 10am, after drinking a ton of coffee."

    REALLY bad idea.

    "He is not using drugs, no documented history of using drugs, and never a drug user."

    The reality is that no one has to believe him when he says that he's NEVER used drugs. And just because one has "no documented history of using drugs" doesn't mean diddly.

    "So he takes another drug test, but drank just as much coffee"

    One would hope he now gets the hint about the coffee.

    "Now, because I live on Planet Earth, I know that when any urine is diluted with water or coffee, the createnine levels come up low."

    Don't presume that something like this, if true, is common knowledge to those of us who "live on Planet Earth." It's not. And it may well be that heavy caffiene consumption causes some or all of the same results as someone who is using a masking agent.

    "How do we make this harassment stop?"

    There's no "harassment" here. Your husband can explain to his PO and her supervisor what happened. They can believe him or disbelieve him. If they don't believe him, he needs to get a lawyer on board ASAP. And he needs to lay off the coffee when he's getting drug tested.

    "Threatening somene like this with no proof is an abuse of power."

    There's not "no proof." There IS evidence. That YOU have an explanation for why the evidence is what it is doesn't mean a hill of beans (no pun intended).

    "Forcing us to pay for drug tests that will "be acceptable" is not my job."

    Hubby should have considered this before he made the voluntary choice to drive while intoxicated.

    "I thought the whole point of parole was to help the person, not stress them out to the point that they revert back to substance abuse, or whatever their vice was."

    Parole and probation (I assume this is a probation officer, not a parole officer) is a privilege to allow a criminal to stay out of jail/prison. It comes with conditions.
  • 04-18-2007 6:31 PM In reply to

    re: Parole Officer Harrassment?

    Well, here's a thought - get up, go directly to PO and provide first urine of the day!
  • 04-18-2007 8:04 PM In reply to

    re: Parole Officer Harrassment?

    Why did he drink so much coffee before the test? Not once, but twice?

    An unbiased observer would think he has something to hide.
  • 04-19-2007 12:01 PM In reply to

    re: Parole Officer Harrassment?

    Really? You think coffee masks evidence of drugs? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Not even a little.

    He had no idea. If you aren't doing anything wrong, you tend to not be paranoid about this sort of thing. He won't drink anything before he goes next time, though.
  • 04-19-2007 12:57 PM In reply to

    Disagree [)*(] re: Parole Officer Harrassment?

    "Really? You think coffee masks evidence of drugs? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Not even a little."

    Get real. Neither of the lawyers who've replied to you think that drinking coffee masks drug use. However, it's a common urban myth that a lot of druggies *DO* believe.

    Apparently the PO, therefore, is of the opinion that your husband thinks it's true, and that is why he is drinking a ton of coffee before his tests. She is perfectly entitled to that opinion, and acting on her belief is not harrassment.

    Richard
  • 04-19-2007 1:59 PM In reply to

    Feedback [*=*] He has to help himself . . .

    Please stop attacking posters because you don't like their responses.

    He needs to do whatever the PO is requesting. All POs are going to do something when the parolee is giving diluted samples time and again.

    The answer is right there - slow down on the coffee.

    He, and you, need to realize that parole is a VERY tenuous circumstance. It means he's been convicted of a crime and SHOULD BE in prison. However, through the grace of a judge or the parole board, he has conditional liberty.

    Foremost among those conditions: Keep the PO happy.

    Erik
    Community Moderator
  • 04-19-2007 2:04 PM In reply to

    Disagree [)*(] goblinkat & CA

    CA: Adding comment that state someone should have thought about XYZ before doing ABC don't help and come across as judgmental.

    Goblinkat: Check the sarcasm. While CA's comment wasn't necessary your retorts to him, and CuriousInCa, went beyond acceptable.

    Denise
  • 04-21-2007 4:52 PM In reply to

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    Feedback [*=*] re: Parole Officer Harrassment?

    A condition of his parole is to submit to random testing for drugs and alcohol, then he should be prepared to do so. This is not harrassment or an abuse of her power, but a condition of his release. It is his "Job" to be able to produce an acceptable specimine for testing, because he is on parole.
    Most states do not ask for blood or hair samples, as the screening test for these are very expensive. But, I am sure that if you and your husband were willing to pay for the test, worked out in advance with the parole officer, that the results would be acepted.
    The fact the this has cost you a "gazillion dollars" in fines should be all the more reason, that he should want to work within the rules set forth by his parole officer. If he does not like the terms of his parole, he could always request that he sentence be activated. So that upon his release, he may not have to report to a parole officer.
    The parole officers that I know have said that if their clients treat them with respect and do as they are asked, they will work with them.

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