Just after midnight the doors of LA's Lynwood correctional facility opened and a visibly relieved Paris Hilton walked free - by her own account a changed woman. The heiress, who commanded as much attention behind bars as she did on the celebrity scene, has declared she now wants "to use her fame in a good way" and plans to open a halfway house for offenders.
Both Kathy and her husband Rick were there to greet the 26-year-old with a big hug as she regained her liberty. With the family limo on hand to whisk her off home, Paris took a moment to greet the waiting crowd, exchanging handshakes and smiles with onlookers.
One of her first engagements is an hour-long appearance on the programme of popular US chatshow host Larry King. There she's expected to relive what were, arguably, the most eventful 23 days of her existence to date.