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Supreme Court Keeps Former Virginia Governor Out Of Jail For Now

Justices let former Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell stay out of jail until they decide whether to hear his appeal of his conviction.

Originally posted on
Updated on

WASHINGTON — Former Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell, convicted on corruption charges relating to his time in office, will stay out of jail for now, under an order from the Supreme Court on Monday.

In the unsigned order, the court has granted McDonnell's request to stay out of jail until the Supreme Court decides whether it will hear his appeal. The former governor was sentenced by the trial court to 24 months in prison, to be followed by two years of supervised release.

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals already rejected McDonnell's appeal, leading him to ask the Supreme Court to review his case. Until the court decides whether it will do so — whether it will grant his petition for a writ of certiorari — McDonnell will not start his sentence, per Monday's order.

"Should the petition for a writ of certiorari be denied, this stay shall terminate automatically," the court ordered. "In the event the petition for a writ of certiorari is granted, the stay shall terminate upon the issuance of the judgment of this Court."

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Chris Geidner is the legal editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, DC. In 2014, Geidner won the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association award for journalist of the year.

Contact Chris Geidner at

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