Schofield and Young Blog

What is the difference between Jail and Prison?

Posted by William Young | Jan 22, 2019 | 0 Comments

Are Jail and Prison Different?

Idaho Jail - Lawyers and Attorneys
Idaho Criminal Defense Blog | William Young and Associates

Jail and prison are ideologically the same thing: to take away the privilege of freedom. If you have been found guilty of a crime, and your punishment entails serving jail or prison time, then you have lost your privilege to freedom. You will be placed in a facility that restricts your access to society. 

The difference however between jail and prison depends on three main factors,

  1. Length of confinement
  2. Severity of crime
  3. Personnel

If you are placed in jail you are serving a shorter sentence (less than 1 year), have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime or were placed on probation in a felony case, and will be in a facility that is ran by local law enforcement; generally the county sheriff's office.

If you are placed in prison you have been convicted of a serious crime (a felony) and will be serving a longer sentence (in excess of 1 year). Prisons are operated by state governments (The Idaho Department of Corrections) or the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP).

If you visit each of these places (like I have many times) you will see immediately that jail and prison are very different places. While jail is by no means a happy place to be, prison is far more serious.

About the Author

William Young

William Young - Idaho Criminal Defense and Trial Attorney As a criminal defense attorney I have handled nearly every type of case - from simple infractions to the most complex felonies. There is no case to small for my attention, and no case too large for me to handle. I fight for my clients a...


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Free Consultation

Each case is unique. The strength and weakness of your case will depend on the particular facts of your case. Contact us for a free consultation. We will answer any questions you have, and give you an honest assessment of your case.

Committed To Every Client

We are committed to providing every client with the respect and compassion they deserve; Every case will receive our full attention and passion. We work one-on-one with every client to make sure you get the best defense possible.