Kiefer Sutherland Is Free!

That deafening cheer you heard last night, so loud it blew the Ye Rustic Inn's front door right off its hinges and into an adjacent stripmall's parking lot, had nothing to do with Brett Favre's crushing defeat, but rather a triumph of the highest order involving one of Silver Lake's favorite sons. For Kiefer Sutherland, you see, had emerged from the Glendale City Jail a free man at precisely 12:05 a.m., having served the entirety of his 48-day sentence, where he passed the long hours "cleaning sheets, pillowcases and blankets on laundry duty." John Balian, a jail spokesman always forthcoming with kindly soundbites and incremental Kiefer updates, offered that the 24 star was wearing "a shirt and jeans," and "looked like he was glad to be out." Why was the beloved Christmas tree assassin forced to serve out his entire sentence, where lesser shock-starlets have been released early for far more serious, traffic-flow-flouting crimes? The AP report explains:

He was granted a request to serve his time in suburban Glendale's city jail rather than in the overcrowded downtown Los Angeles County jail. The trade-off was that he could not shave any time off his sentence for good behavior or early release because of overcrowding.

The actor must also serve five years probation and complete an 18-month alcohol education program and attend weekly therapy sessions for six months.

Does this mean we'll never again experience the mixed-with-the-drunken-locals Kiefer of old, who giddily hopped between various Eastside dive establishments where everyone knew his name, and probably would have even if he wasn't constantly saving the world in day-long increments on Fox? Tell us it ain't so, as a Silver Lake bereft of sauced Kiefer sightings sounds to us as desolate as a Valencia after a suitcase-nuke detonation.