Probation’s Risk-Needs Assessment Process in a Nutshell

For the past few years, the Section of Community Corrections of the Division of Adult Correction has been transitioning to what they call “evidence-based practices,” or EBP. The basic idea is to use series of assessment tools to identify which offenders are mostly likely to reoffend and most in need of programming, and then tailor their supervision accordingly. The process involves  some terminology that is probably familiar by now to most probation officers, but may be less familiar to judges, lawyers, and defendants. Today’s post provides an overview of the process probation officers use to sort probationers into different supervision levels and an introduction into what those levels mean for probationers as a practical matter.

The post includes some charts and images that didn’t render very well in our blog software, so it’s available as a .pdf file here. I hope you’ll take a look.

5 thoughts on “Probation’s Risk-Needs Assessment Process in a Nutshell”

  1. NC-CURE is the NC Chapter for Citizens United for Rehabilitation of Errants, see We are a non-profit grassroots organization who advocate for family and prisoners in NC. Are initiatives focus on people incarcerated in NC however lately we have been inundated with questions re; probation from family, friends and prisoners alike. Currently we are working with an inmate whose crime took place in 2006, convicted in 2007 felony E&G. His plea bargain states he will do 24 months supervised probation and 120 days suspended sentence. Our question is what part if any of the JRA will apply to him?? it appears after speaking with his PO Officer they have him under the new rules we are confused they refer to his probation as parole…and that his probation will be set up through the parole commission. Could you provide information on probation under the JRA pertaining to probationers waiting to be released whose crimes were prior to Dec. 2011, it would appear that his probation officer is confused along with others.


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