Depending on the seriousness of the crime(s), sentencing may involve 1 or a combination of punishments. Besides prison or jail time, alternative sentencing may incorporate a suspended sentence, probation, a fine, restitution, community service, or diversion. In most criminal instances, unless it truly is a capital case decided by a jury, the judge will determine the punishment by taking into consideration factors like the defendant’s age, the impact of the crime on the victims, along with the defendant’s level of remorse.
Types of Criminal Sentencing
A Texas judge can decree a sentence that’s determinate. A determinate sentence is a fixed-term regulated by state statute. A judge will establish the length of a sentence by applying sentencing guidelines, mandatory minimum sentencing, and applicable enhanced sentencing for a variety of crimes.
As an alternative to imprisonment, a judge can suspend a prison or jail sentence. This is generally employed in instances involving less serious crimes or for first-time offenders. A suspended sentence may be unconditional or conditional. An unconditional suspended sentence allows the judge to abstain from imposing the proscribed punishment. Nevertheless, the conviction is still a matter of public record.
If the suspended sentence is conditional, the judge can hold off from imposing the punishment for so long as the defendant fulfills the condition of the suspension. Typical conditions may incorporate not committing other crimes or enrolling in a substance abuse program. If a defendant violates the terms of a conditional suspension, the judge can impose the original punishment.
A judge may order probation instead of imposing jail or prison time. Probation will require the offender to follow specific conditions. Standard probation will compel the offender to regularly report to a probation officer, even though an additional, much more invasive type of probation could involve GPS monitoring or house detention. Although on probation, the offender should generally keep a job, not relocate to another state with out permission, undergo drug testing, and keep existing with obligated payments, for example fines or restitution.
An offender that violates any of the conditions could have probation revoked. A prosecutor can decide to file a complaint asking the judge to revoke probation. Upon the determination that the offender violated probation, the judge can impose the original jail or prison sentence, can reinstate probation, or can order far more severe conditions of probation.
As an option to incarceration, a judge might impose a fine. A fine is normally employed in instances involving less severe crimes or those involving first-time offenders. A judge may also impose a fine in conjunction with other varieties of punishments, such as incarceration and probation.
A judge, in conjunction with another type of punishment, might order the offender to pay the victim for the personal injury or the property damage sustained. Restitution is meant to restore the victim and to ensure that the offender is not unjustly enriched. Consequently, a court might order the offender to pay for expenses like medical bills and counseling.
As punishment, a judge can order an offender to perform unpaid community service work. This punishment is often utilised in misdemeanor cases as a way to ensure that the offender repays society for the crime. Community service may involve picking up garbage in a park, clearing brush, or giving lectures about the dangers of the criminal activity. The goals of community service are punishment, reparation, restitution, and rehabilitation.
Rather than impose incarceration in less severe offenses involving misdemeanors, a judge may possibly divert a case. This means that upon the defendant’s completion of a condition, like the completion a treatment or rehabilitation program, a judge may possibly drop the criminal charges. Commonly, these kinds of circumstances involve drug or alcohol abuse, child abuse, and domestic violence.
Houston Criminal Defense: The Charles Johnson Law Firm
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