Parole Definition

The release of a convicted criminal defendant after that person has completed part of his or her prison sentence, based on the concept that during the period of parole, the released criminal can prove he or she is rehabilitated and can "make good" in society. A parole generally has a specific period and terms, such as reporting to a parole officer, not associating with other ex-convicts, and staying out of trouble. Violation of the terms may result in revocation of parole and a return to prison to complete his or her sentence. Compare: probation