Is a judge more likely to sentence someone to rehab instead of prison if they are already in treatment?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Is a judge more likely to sentence someone to rehab instead of prison if they are already in treatment?

My ex has 2 felony charges for possession of heroin, 1 gram. He’s in county jail waiting for his court date which is now 2 weeks away but is asking to be bailed out and put into rehab until then. He believes that by showing initiative

and a desire to change, his chances are higher of a judge allowing him to stay in treatment instead of sentencing him to prison. Is there any truth to this?

Asked on June 20, 2018 under Criminal Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, there is truth to it as a very general rule: judges are supposed to look at factors such as the defendant's remorse, acceptance of responsibility, positive steps taken to change/improve his life, etc. in terms of setting sentences--including imposing alternatives to imprisonment. But that's a broad generalization: each judge is different. The judge your ex gets may take this into consideration or may not.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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