Criminal Law Questions? Ask a Criminal Lawyer.
You are absolutely correct, by law, all of a person's sentence must be announced by the judge. No one other than a judge may hand down sentencing.
Did you have an attorney? If so, you should contact your attorney tomorrow to find out what took place. If you did not have an attorney, you can still check the documents that contain your judgment and sentence. You were likely given a copy while you were in court. If not, you can go the the courthouse and request a copy. Either way, that document should contain the terms of your sentence.
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My mother, step-father, and girlfriend were all in attendance and they did not hear the community sentence read out loud either. I went to the court and obtained my court papers, since I did not receive them after court, and the community service is located there. I guess at this point it's our word against the judges but I will continue to try and reach my court appointed lawyer for his take. We were all just really surprised when I received the letter threatening to report me to the judge for not reporting when none of us were aware that it had been sentenced.
Thanks for the insight.
There should have been some recording system in place, either an actual court reporter typing everything down or a video system. You can check with the clerk of court as to how it was recorded. If you're serious about disputing the service hours, you could order a copy and see what it holds.
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