Victim Services

Parole Hearing Explanation

Glossary of Terms

Parole Hearings

Victims, who are registered with the Department, are notified of parole hearings 30 days prior to a hearing date, and have a right to attend the hearing to personally state their testimony to the Parole Board.  Victims may also attend the hearing by videoconferencing at the Charleston or Spartanburg Remote Videoconferencing Site.  Victims may voice their opposition to parole by submitting letters or petitions, or by calling the Office of Victim Services.  State law provides that the primary victims (or the next of kin if the victim is deceased or is a minor) may submit a DVD of their opposition in lieu of attending the hearing in person.

Click here for information on submitting a DVD.

Click here to submit an email opposing parole or go here to fill out our online form.

Parole hearings are conducted at the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services located at 2221 Devine Street, Columbia, South Carolina.  Victims, or anyone opposing parole, should come to this location.  

Click here for directions to Parole Hearings.

Click here to view the Parole Board Manual.

The inmate, as well as his or her family member and supporters, will be located at one of the South Carolina Department of Corrections Institutions.  The Parole Board communicates with them via videoconferencing.  If you elect to attend the Charleston or Spartanburg Remote Videoconferencing Sites, you must contact the Office of Victim Services at least two weeks in advance to register.  At that time you will be given directions to the site.

If you plan to attend a hearing to oppose parole, you should contact Missy Knight, Assistant Director of Victim Services, or Sandra McCray, Victim Services Liaison, at 1-888-551-4418 (toll free) or 803-734-9367 if calling from the Columbia area.  On the designated hearing date, you should arrive at the specified time indicated on your letter.

Upon arrival, you will be greeted by Victim Services’ staff, who will explain the hearing process to you and answer your questions.  The hearings are public hearings by law so please be aware that an audiotape of each hearing is being made.

The Parole Board will allow up to five victims and witnesses to appear regarding an inmate’s potential parole.  Limitations or exceptions to this guideline will be considered on an individual basis.  In fairness to other victims’ families that may want to attend, we ask that you please be respectful of this limit.

Once you enter the hearing room, the Parole Board chairman will ask you to state your name for the record.  It is helpful if you also state your relationship to the victim, or the name of the organization that you are representing.  After you have informed the Board of your reasons for opposition, you will be escorted back into the waiting area, and a member of the Victim Services staff will advised you of the Board’s decision.  If parole is denied, the inmate can be heard again in one or two years – depending on the date and classification of the offense.  If parole is granted, you will be advised of the conditions of the parole.