The criminal justice system does not make significant allowances for "first time offenders" There is a chart that is set up like a grid where the sentencing guidelines are an actual point system. Points given to the various aspects of the conviction. Once the points are added up, the judge is give a range to determine the sentence.
Another element to sentencing is the Pre-Sentence Report (PSR) that is compiled and written by the Pre-Sentence Investigator (PSI), This report compiles all of what the prosecution alleged and how much your offender had a role in. The PSI interviews the offender and takes pieces of that interview along with his life's history of what other things that they might have done that gives the judge a picture of the character of the person they are getting ready to sentence. Criminal history is one part but it is also "what they think of his intent, state of mind, did he take responsibility, did he plead guilty or did he go to trial" - anything that will paint a picture of this person, usually in the worst possible light.
Another component is if the offender cooperated with the justice department which would give a sentence reduction - this is called a 5K-1 which comes with a recommendation from the prosecution. Then the judge sentences in open court - usually within the range determined through all of the above methods (considering whether it should be in the high range, low range or a variance of both). Following the sentence being handed down, and depending on the circumstance, the judge will either allow him to self-surrender to a prison location determined solely by the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) or the US Marshals will take him immediately into custody to await transport to the destination and custody level determined by the BOP.
Since we do not know what the conviction consisted of or what his background is, we do not know how else to prepare you for what is about to happen. If you want to share additional information, we can go over the Sentencing Guideline table and give you an estimate of what the possible sentence might be.
Accepted Answer Date Created: November 27,2014