Congress established the Federal Probation System in 1925. In 1927, the first salaried probation officer was appointed, and by 1931, 62 probation officers and 11 clerks served 54 districts. In 1932, the average caseload was 400 offenders.
The Eastern District of North Carolina is comprised of 44 counties bordering the Atlantic Ocean and the states of Virginia and South Carolina. The Probation Office consists of headquarters located in Raleigh, and field offices located in Fayetteville, Greenville, Jacksonville, Wilmington and New Bern. The chief probation officer, Van R. Freeman, Jr., is appointed by the Court, with a staff of probation officers, administrative, automation, and clerical support personnel.
Within the agency, the Court Services Unit is responsible for verifying reliable defendant data necessary to make informed release or detention decisions, reducing unnecessary detentions, providing alternatives to detention, and preparing reports on defendants to be sentenced by the Court.
The Supervision Services Unit of the probation office is responsible for supervising defendants released from custody on probation, supervised release, parole, military parole, and conditional release. In addition to supervising defendants to ensure they abide by the terms and conditions of supervision, officers monitor potential risk to the community and provide counseling and assistance in working out problems, obtaining employment, and other services as needed so that judicial resources can be reserved for more serious offenses..