Amber Portwood sentenced to five years in prison but sentence stayed
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 02/06/2012
Amber Portwood will reportedly be able to avoid additional jail time as long as she can complete a rehab program.
The Teen Mom star was sentenced to five years in jail for drug and probation violations during a court appearance on Monday, but according to a Madison County clerk, Portwood's sentence will be stayed pending whether she can be accepted into and complete an intense drug rehabilitation program, E! Newsreported.
Portwood was sentenced to three years for a December drug violation charge in which she had possession of prescription pills without proof of having the actual prescription and two years for violating her probation terms of her 2011 plea deal for assaulting Gary Shirley, the on-again, off-again fiance and father of her two-year-old daughter Leah.
Portwood will be held in custody until Thursday and taken to Madison County Drug Court at approximately 2PM that day, where drug officials will reportedly confirm whether the reality TV star should be accepted into the rehab program -- which could take Portwood anywhere from 18 months to three years to finish depending on how long the officials order her to participate.
Upon admittance, Portwood would be released from custody and undergo treatment while living at home with her mother. If at any point she failed to adhere to the program's requirements, she could be put behind bars to serve her full five-year sentence, E! News reported.
However, if the drug court comes to the conclusion that Portwood is not suitable for treatment and therefore not eligible to enter rehab, the Teen Mom star would reportedly be able to return to court and withdraw her guilty pleas. Portwood would then be put on trial on the drug possession charge and probation violation.
The reality TV star's mother Tonya Portwood insisted her daughter's "60-month probation" is an unfair form of punishment.
"I think they are using her as a prime example to make themselves look good for political reasons... I don't think she should have received the punishment she was given [in the first place]," she told E! News.