In criminal law, probation refers to a period of supervision over an offender. This period is usually ordered by a law court and the reprobate is allowed to remain in the community as opposed to staying in prison. Offenders are required to follow a set of austere conditions and rules set by the court under the supervision of a probation officer.  Therefore, a probation officer is a government official tasked with the supervision of offenders sentenced to non-custodial sanctions, for instance, community service or those released from prison and allowed to rejoin the community. In some states, probation officers are responsible for compiling reports of the offenders and helping the court to make recommendations concerning appropriate sentences. Parole officers play a critical role in society by helping offenders to change their ways and become productive members of society.

Who Appoints Probation Officers?

In the mid-1920s, Senator Copeland introduced the Federal Probation Act. Around the same time, President Coolidge, who was quite conversant with the essence of a well-designed and an active probation system, signed it into law. As a result, the regulation gave American Courts the authority to appoint Probation Officers and the power to save offenders from prison sentences. This Act later gave court-appointed Probation Officers the role of supervising criminals granted parole by America’s Parole Commission. Currently, Probation Officers are appointed by district courts of the United States.

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