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Johnny Jolly granted release after six months of six-year sentence

Johnny Jolly

Suspended Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Johnny Jolly cries as he testifies in court Thursday, Nov. 17, 2011, in Houston. Jolly was sentenced to six years in prison for violating the terms of his probation on a drug charge. He was charged with possession of a compound containing codeine and tampering with evidence after a traffic stop in October. It was his third drug arrest in three years. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)


A Texas judge has granted former Packers defensive lineman Johnny Jolly his request for early release, just six months into a six-year prison sentence.

The judge gave Jolly what is known as “shock probation,” which is granted when an offender convinces a judge that he was shocked into turning his life around by spending a short period of time in prison. Jolly will remain on probation for 10 years and will have to serve 200 hours of community service.

Jolly was arrested four times for illegal possession of codeine, and he has said that he battled an addiction to codeine since high school. He and his lawyer have also argued that he is merely an addict who has never hurt anyone other than himself, and that he doesn’t belong in prison with dangerous criminals. The judge evidently agreed.

The 29-year-old Jolly, who started every game for the Packers in the 2008 and 2009 seasons, has been indefinitely suspended from the NFL since 2010.