Charlie Sheen faces a most uncommon jail in Aspen

Fri Jun 4, 2010 7:47pm EDT
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By Ellen Miller

GRAND JUNCTION, Colorado (Reuters) - If, as expected, Charlie Sheen serves jail time in the wealthy enclave of Aspen, Colorado, he will live where the floors are carpeted, the cells look like college dormitories and hot meals are brought in from a hospital.

No, this isn't Hollywood. There are no cells stacked one atop the other, no loud noise from raucous inmates, or hard time discipline sent down by a mean-spirited staff.

This is the Pitkin County Jail, where the inmates of Aspen are held.

"The punitive aspect is loss of your freedom and liberty, and that's as far as it goes," Pitkin County Sheriff Bob Braudis told Reuters on Friday. "We want to release inmates in better shape than when they came in."

He said most inmates are in pretrial detention, and thus presumed innocent. They are incarcerated, he said, because they cannot make bond.

"Poor people stay in jail; rich men bond out," he said.

Sheen, an award-winning actor and star of hit comedy "Two and a Half Men" is hardly poor, but he is in trouble.

On Monday, he is widely expected to plead no contest to assaulting his wife in Aspen, where the Pitkin County government is based, and be sentenced to as much as 30 days in the jail. He landed there for a short stint when arrested in December on Christmas Day, before posting bond.   Continued...

<p>Actor Charlie Sheen smiles at the CBS summer press tour party at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, July 15, 2006. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni</p>