COLUMBUS -- A judge is allowing seven of nine Amish defendants convicted in beard- and hair-cutting attacks on fellow Amish to remain free before they are sentenced early next year.
U.S. District Court Judge Dan Aaron Polster says he's mindful that their immediate detention could leave a number of very young children without parents.
But Polster also said in a ruling Monday that all 16 defendants should be prepared to be taken into custody in late January if he imposes a prison sentence.
Most of the defendants Polster is allowing to stay free are women who said they have large families to care for.
Seven other defendants have been in custody since their indictments.
The judge declined to allow two defendants, Lester Miller and Raymond Miller, to remain free and ordered them to report to U.S. marshals by Friday.
AP Legal Affairs Writer
The Associated Press