How and when is sentencing determined?

The judge presiding over the case sentences a defendant who has been found guilty or has plead guilty. Using state guidelines, (sentences are expressed in terms of minimums, maximums, and other options) the judge sentences the defendant in a manner appropriate to the crime and other circumstances related to the case. The defendant may be sentenced to jail, placed on probation, ordered to make restitution, or ordered to pay court costs and/or a fine. 

Sentencing Assessment Report

Before making his decision, however, the judge will normally have the opportunity to review a Sentencing Assessment Report, which is an evaluation of the defendant prepared for the sentencing judge by the State Board of Probation and Parole. It contains a recommendation as to probation or incarceration and is an important factor in the judge’s decision. 

You may be contacted by the Board for information in preparing the report. You may also have a chance to present either a written or oral victim impact statement at sentencing. The statement can relate only to the facts of the case and any personal injuries or financial loss incurred by the victim. A member of the immediate family of the victim may appear personally or by an attorney of their choosing to make a statement, if the victim is otherwise unable, for any reason, to appear as a result of the offense committed by the defendant.

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1. What is a subpoena?
2. How does a complaint become a criminal case?
3. What is a preliminary hearing?
4. What if the judge decides there is not sufficient evidence at the preliminary hearing?
5. Do cases always go to trial if they are not dismissed?
6. What happens if the case gets set for trial?
7. What happens in a trial?
8. How and when is sentencing determined?
9. What if I change my mind about prosecuting or testifying?
10. What if the defense attorney contacts me about the case?
11. What if someone threatens me to drop the charges?
12. Should I be concerned if months pass without hearing from the court or the Prosecuting Attorney's Office?
13. Where do I park?
14. Can I be compensated for losses I have suffered as a victim?