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Why do some go to jail immediately and others can turn themselves in later?

Question: Why do some people go to jail immediately and others are allowed to turn themselves in later?

Photo Credit Mscogly via Flickr

Answer: I am assuming you mean after a guilty conviction, why do some defendants get led away in handcuffs immediately and others are allowed to walk free until a later date.

Generally, when this occurs it is due to a deferred sentencing.  Basically, if the judge believes that the recently convicted defendant does not pose a serious risk of flight or danger to the community, they can maintain their bond status until sentencing at a later date.  Oftentimes, this is done to conduct a pre-sentencing investigation.  This way the attorneys can present arguments, based on a thorough investigation, concerning how lenient or tough the defendant’s sentence should be.  This can take days, weeks, or even a month or more.

Another circumstance that I can think of where a defendant is released after a conviction, is when a judge grants a deferment on the execution of the sentence.  Occasionally, a judge may give a convicted person a period of time to get their affairs in order and report to the jail, at a later date, to serve their sentence.  This is the exception more than the rule and does not occur on a routine basis.

Remember, if you are planning on being convicted of a crime, bring your toothbrush because many times, upon conviction, the judge will revoke your bond and send you to jail immediately to begin your jail sentence.  After all, you did it, so you should pay the piper!