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No jail time for Michael Phelps following DUI conviction

Anyone can make a mistake. Teachers, law enforcement, students and celebrity athletes alike, all can end up facing serious consequences due to clouded judgment. However, just because someone makes a mistake, it does not mean his or her life is over. 

Take for example the recent drunk driving conviction of gold medalist Michael Phelps. The Olympic athlete recently pleaded guilty to driving under the influence. His plea comes months after a DUI arrest. 

After his arrest, Phelps went to inpatient treatment for substance abuse. He has since joined Alcoholics Anonymous and, in a statement, said he plans to continue to focus on his recovery. 

In terms of the criminal consequences, Phelps will not serve any time in jail. Rather, he was handed down a one-year suspended sentence and will be on probation for the next year. According to the CBS news article, he will not have to have an ignition interlock device installed in his vehicle and may even get his driver's license back this month. 

For Phelps though -- like anyone -- the consequences do not just stop in the courtroom. U.S.A. Swimming, the national body that oversees competitive swimming, has suspended Phelps for six months, which means he will miss the 2015 World Championships. 

For the average Rhode Island resident learning of this case, know that Michael Phelps did have an attorney on his side during this case. In general, seeking out legal guidance is always encouraged, as not only does an attorney have a deep understanding of the law, but an attorney may also be able to push for a plea bargain or other favorable outcome. Whether negotiation or a trial makes the most sense, an attorney will be able to fully investigate the case and examine all evidence.

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