Paris Hilton by John Sciulli/WireImage.com Paris Hilton by John Sciulli/WireImage.com
Paris Hilton has not only had her jail stay cut short, but she is already out and about and, I dunno, panting after that Stavros fella. In a Thursday-morning press conference, a Los Angeles County sheriff's department spokesperson explained that "after extensive consultation with medical personnel," it was decided that Hilton would be released, fitted with an ankle bracelet (how Jersey shore) and instead confined to her home for 40 days (aka the remainder of her original sentence), where she will be turned over to the supervision of the L.A. County probation department. Citing confidentiality, the sheriff's rep would not elaborate on the aforementioned medical "consultation," but described Hilton's composure behind bars as "focused," and stressed that her being remanded to at-home custody "is not unprecedented" but in fact happens from "time to time." Lucky for us, a new "jail watch" may be in the making, as pal-of-Paris

Nicole Richie frets that she may be sentenced to her own stint in the slammer, stemming from her December '06 DUI. "I'm scared... but, you know, I'm willing to face whatever consequences come my way," the skinny minnie said during a Wednesday

Letterman taping. "I take responsibility for what I've done." Even if it means upwards of 72 hours in the clink? UPDATE: Law-enforcement sources tell TMZ.com that Paris' "medical" condition was psychological - that she was at risk of having a nervous breakdown - and had nothing to do with a rash (as reported elsewhere).... The president of the Association of Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs is appalled by Hilton's "reassignment," telling TMZ, "There appears to have been preferential treatment" shown by Sheriff Lee Baca (who in the past has insisted he does not cut celebs slack). UPDATE: In a statement issued by her lawyer, Paris says, "I want to thank the Los Angeles County sheriff's department and staff of the Century Regional Detention Center for treating me fairly and professionally. I am going to serve the remaining 40 days of my sentence. I have learned a great deal from this ordeal" - like, how to use a scrunchie to defend oneself in the yard? - "and hope that others have learned from my mistakes."