Hilton vows to finish jail sentence

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JAILED heiress Paris Hilton has told her lawyers not to appeal against her return to prison and instead vowed to serve her time.

In a statement posted on the website tmz.com she said: “Today I told my attorneys not to appeal the judge’s decision.

“While I greatly appreciate the Sheriff’s concern for my health and welfare, after meeting with doctors I intend to serve my time as ordered by the judge.

“This is by far the hardest thing I have ever done. During the past several days, I have had a lot of time to reflect and have already learned a bitter, but important lesson from this experience.

“As I have said before, I hope others will learn from my mistake. I have also had time to read the mail from my fans. I very much appreciate all of their good wishes and hope they will keep their letters coming.

“I must also say that I was shocked to see all of the attention devoted to the amount of time I would spend in jail for what I had done by the media, public and city officials.

“I would hope going forward that the public and the media will focus on more important things, like the men and women serving our country in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places around the world.”

Shocked

On Friday, Hilton was sent back to jail less than 36 hours after she was allowed home and told she could finish her sentence wearing a tag.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said he had allowed Hilton home due to “her severe medical problems” and confirmed that her condition was “mental”.

Hilton is currently in a high security unit being assessed before a decision is made about where she should be housed for the remainder of her jail term.

Yesterday Los Angeles County sheriff’s spokesman Steve Whitmore declined to discuss details of Hilton’s case, including the state of her medical evaluations.

“All I can say, as with all the inmates in this facility, they are monitored continuously,” Whitmore said.

Mr Baca said Hilton had originally arrived at jail with a condition which he had not been told about.

He said she immediately began to deteriorate to the point that he feared for her safety.

“When you’re talking about psychological problems it’s far more complex and it does require a more complex medical approach,” Baca said. “We didn’t have all of our information.”

He said the Twin Towers detention centre where she is currently being assessed was a “better facility for her condition, meaning one that has a more intense form of medical support”.

Mr Baca said she would be kept under close watch to ensure “that there isn’t anything harmful done to herself by herself, which is a great concern to me”.

The Twin Towers unit is equipped to treat acute medical and mental health needs, although inmates who need additional care are moved to a hospital.

Hilton is in a room Whitmore described as a little more than 100 sq ft (9.29sqm), with a toilet, sink and “a sliver of a window”.

It is roomier than her first cell which measured only 96 sq ft (8.92sqm).

When Supreme Court Judge Michael Sauer originally sentenced Hilton, he specified she would not be able to serve her sentence at home.

After she was released, he called her back to his courtroom and sent her back to Los Angeles County Jail’s Lynwood lockup.

The 26-year-old was taken from court screaming after she shouted: “It’s not right!” and “Mum”.

Released

Her early release had come only three full days into her original 45-day sentence for violating probation in an alcohol-related reckless driving case.

She was told she could finish her sentence under house arrest, meaning she could not leave her four-bedroom, three-bathroom home in the Hollywood Hills until next month.

But the move was strongly opposed by the sentencing judge and the city’s chief prosecutor.

Judge Sauer told the court: “I at no time condoned the actions of the sheriff and at no time told him I approved the actions.

“At no time did I approve the defendant being released from custody to her home on Kings Road.”

Assistant City Attorney Dan Jeffries said: “Her release after only three days erodes confidence in the judicial system.”

After Hilton was sent back to court, Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo said: “This decision sends the message that no individual – no matter how wealthy or powerful – is above the law. Justice was served.”

The Los Angeles County jail system is so overcrowded that lawyers and jail officials have said it is not unusual for non-violent offenders like Hilton to be released after serving as little as 10 per cent of their sentences.

After his decision to send her home was reversed, Mr Baca said there was simply no room at his jail for a “low-level offender” like Paris Hilton.

In a statement, the sheriff said: “There’s 20,000 inmates, the largest jail system in the United States… It’s very overcrowded.”

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