What Is The Sentencing Hearing?

By: LawInfo
Except for minor offenses, such as infractions a sentencing hearing is held where the final sentence or penalty is determined. The law gives the judge a great deal of leeway in determining what the sentence may be. The character of and circumstances surrounding the defendant can be as important as the severity of the crime in determining what sentence will be imposed.

The sentence is imposed after the jury or judge has provided the judgment. At the sentencing hearing, both the prosecution and the defense are given the opportunity to present evidence and testimony to recommend an appropriate sentence. The judge is free to ignore these recommendations, even if the prosecutor and defense lawyer have agreed to a sentence as a part of a plea agreement.

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