People don't bat an eye when a judge orders you to wear an ankle bracelet if you're sentenced to being under house arrest. But a charm bracelet?
Jennifer Fanopoulos was not confined to home sentencing, but U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge sentenced her to three years on probation for obtaining illegal drugs in the hospital where she worked.
However, Lodge had an additional requirement to Fanopoulos's sentence.
She was ordered to wear a bracelet bearing the photos of her children as a daily reminder to avoid using drugs and consume alcohol.
Idaho Woman Sentenced to Wear Charm Bracelet https://t.co/50pn0F5opL https://t.co/7MSuPnRo3v— Xeno (@Xeno) 1556460646.0
Assistant Criminal Justice Professor Jacqueline Lee with Boise State University told the Associated Press that the unique probation was rare and its effectiveness in preventing future crimes is undocumented.
"I've never seen anything like this, but certainly judges do depart from the normal conditions sometimes."
"There are some cases where they describe some of these terms as a 'scarlet letter,' where they've made people who have a DUI put a sign-up, or get a special license plate designating the conviction."
"But this (the charm bracelet) doesn't seem like it has the same intent behind it, in terms of shaming a defendant."
Twitter couldn't pass up an opportunity to comment on the peculiar punishment.
@CBS6Albany That’ll show her!— He Hate Me (@He Hate Me) 1556389434.0
@CBS6Albany Judges just loooove dreaming up ways to get attention.— Nino B (@Nino B) 1556395108.0
@KUTV2News 😂😂😂 That’s all? What about a ball and chain? 😂— Jill Farley (@Jill Farley) 1556489756.0
Sorry, I can't tonight, I have to wear charm bracelet on probation— Excuses 4 Free (@Excuses 4 Free) 1556512429.0
@JanesAmerica Wow. Most of the female inmates I work with are serving six months just for drug possession. I bet t… https://t.co/LW60YA3B5D— Nancy DeWitt (@Nancy DeWitt) 1555537518.0
University of Idaho College of Law Professor Shaakirrah Sanders is confused as to why the judge would order the bizarre punishment.
She said that judges are expected to abide within certain standards, including making sure the requirement doesn't exceed the severity of the crime with cruel or unusual punishment.
Sanders had some questions about the judge's decision:
"I'd be very curious about the basis of why the court thinks that would be helpful."
"I'm also curious as to whether this judge has made these types of terms of probation for other defendants: Is this a one-time occurrence? Is this used for every parent that struggles with addiction, or only for defendants who are mothers who find themselves in court?"
Judges have a lot of discretion when it comes to handing out sentences to criminal defendants, but some experts say… https://t.co/sFwNUGZIdQ— KOMO News (@KOMO News) 1556362860.0
Lee added that unusual probation requirements aren't challenged.
"People don't often appeal probation conditions in the same way they would a prison sentence."
Does Fanopoulos deserve her peculiar requirement? If the bracelet fits, I suppose.