WEST BLOOMFIELD, Mich. (AP) _ State Sen. Richard Fessler was released today after serving 23 hours in jail on a contempt charge for withholding mortgage and child support payments to his estranged wife.

Oakland County Circuit Judge Robert L. Templin on Monday ordered Fessler, a Republican from West Bloomfield, held until he paid $1,970.88 on the house where his wife, Marilyn, and two of their three children live.

Fessler made the payment and left Oakland County Jail this morning after 23 hours in custody, according to a sheriff's deputy who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Templin said the senator had violated an order to make the payments by Nov. 9. Fessler, 44, told the judge he had no money and that his wife, Marilyn, could cover the payments.

Fessler said his only income is the $43,000 he receives as a legislator. He said he earns nothing from his real estate business and his law practice is in debt.

The Fesslers separated in August after 16 years of marriage. In earlier court appearances, they charged each other with physical abuse and failure to abide by court orders.

''I guess the judge doesn't like me,'' Fessler said as a deputy led him out away.