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Just 82 minutes after Nicole Richie checked herself into Lynwood jail, she left a free woman. Hard time her ass!

According to the official website of the L.A. Sheriff's Dept., Richie checked in at 3:15 PM and was released at 4:37 PM. She was assigned to a cell for only 35 minutes! It takes longer to watch an episode of "The Simple Life" ... and it's more painful!

A Sheriff's source tells TMZ Nicole was routinely processed and released according to normal operating rules. [READ MORE]