* As I told subscribers a couple weeks ago, George Ryan will be released from prison by January 30th. Phil Rogers takes a look at the former governor’s new reality…
For the last six years, the former governor has been a federal prisoner. When he leaves the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute next week, he will be travelling not to Kankakee but to a halfway house in Chicago.
And he has nothing to pack. Someone will have to bring him the clothes he wears out of the prison gate.
“It will be the first time he’s worn his own clothes in six years,” Ryan’s former chief of staff, Scott Fawell, said Monday.
Fawell provides a unique perspective. Not only was he Ryan’s closest advisor, but he also did more than four years himself for Ryan-related crimes. And he occupied that same Salvation Army halfway house on Chicago’s west side.
“It’s dingy. It’s dark. It’s dirty,” Fawell said. “It’s an old facility.”
And ironically, said Fawell, it will be the place where Ryan will most likely mingle with the hardest criminals he will see during his entire stay with the Bureau of Prisons.
“You can be in the same room with guys who have done 20 or 30 years in prison, where he’s used to a little different clientele,” Fawell explained.
Ryan will be required to take mandatory classes on such mundane skills as opening a bank account, writing a check, and making out a resume. It sounds ridiculous for a former governor but is par for the course in the Bureau of Prisons’, one-size-fits-all approach to corrections.
Go read the whole thing.
* George Ryan set to move to halfway house
* George Ryan will finish term in halfway home
*** UPDATE 1 *** Bill Cellini reports to prison today…
A judge earlier this month set Tuesday as the reporting date for Cellini, 78. Once known as the “King of Clout,” Cellini was initially supposed to report on Jan. 4 but was granted an extension.
Bureau of Prisons spokesman Chris Burke says Cellini hasn’t yet reported. He’s required to report by 2 p.m.
Burke says he can’t identify Cellini’s prison until he arrives. Cellini had requested a Montgomery, Ala., prison.
*** UPDATE 2 *** He went to Terre Haute…
Springfield businessman Bill Cellini reported this afternoon to the same prison where former Illinois Gov. George Ryan is completing his corruption sentence.
Chris Burke, spokesman for the Federal Bureau of Prisons, said that it is likely that Ryan and Cellini would see each other at the institution.
“It’s a more open facility,” he said.Burke said Cellini is at the minimum security portion of the Terre Haute Federal Correctional Complex.