This is one of the cramped cells at the prison Felicity Huffman will call home for the next two weeks as she serves time for her role in the college admissions scandal.
The 56-year-old actress reported to the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California, on Tuesday to begin her 14-day sentence.
The minimum-security women’s prison is known to locals as ‘Club Fed’, and has a reputation as one of America’s cushiest lock-ups – but it’s still a far cry from her sprawling Los Angeles mansion.
A photograph of one of the cells shows the tight quarters with barely any floor space between three beds dressed in white sheets and a small sink tucked right by the door.
This is one of the cramped prison cells at the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California, where Felicity Huffman will spend the next two weeks as she serves time for her role in the college admissions scandal
Felicity Huffman, 56, surrendered to authorities on Tuesday at the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California, according to a spokeswoman
FCI Dublin (pictured) is a minimum-security women’s prison with a reputation as one of America’s cushiest lock-ups
Huffman’s lawyers had asked Judge Talwani to recommend that she be allowed to serve her sentence in Dublin because it’s the closest federal prison to her home in Los Angeles.
The decision to place her there was ultimately made by the Federal Bureau of Prisons.
FCI Dublin is one of four federal penitentiaries in the US prison system that exclusively houses female inmates with a population of 1,235.
Locals often refer to the facility ‘Chateau Dublin’ because ‘it’s more like a luxury retreat than a prison’, a source told RadarOnline.
It’s located close to the Bay Area, where the weather is pleasant year-round.
Huffman’s lawyers had asked a judge to recommend that she be allowed to serve her sentence in Dublin because it’s the closest federal prison to her home in Los Angeles
The prison is located close to the Bay Area, where the weather is pleasant year-round. Locals have even dubbed the facility ‘Chateau Dublin’
Huffman will have the inmate number 77806-112. She is expected to serve the full 14 days because there is no time off for good behavior in the federal system for inmates sentenced to less than a year.
Under FCI Dublin’s rules, inmates are required to be in bed for lights out at 10pm every night. They have to be up with beds made by 6.30am for a daily inspection.
Inmates face restrictions in their email communications, the recipients of which must be pre-approved.
Emails are sent through a software that gives the recipients of the messages the option of accepting or rejecting correspondence.
Email messages are also limited to 13,000 characters, and there are no pictures or other attachments allowed.
Huffman will be allowed to have visitors on Saturdays and Sundays between 8am and 2pm, though inmates are not allowed to receive gifts.
FCI Dublin’s famous inmates
Dublin has had some famous inmates in its history.
Among the most notable are Heidi Fleiss, the ‘Hollywood Madam’ who was convicted of money laundering and tax evasion in 1997.
Fleiss gained fame for operating a prostitution ring that catered to high-profile Hollywood clients.
She was sentenced to seven years and served 20 months in Dublin before being released.
Another famous inmate at Dublin was Patty Hearst.
The daughter of publishing giant William Randolph Hearst, Hearst made headlines in 1974, when she took part in a bank robbery with members of the Symbionese Liberation Army.
The SLA, a left-wing anti-capitalist terrorist organization, kidnapped Hearst when she was 19 years old.
Hearst then joined the group, though she later claimed to have been brainwashed, threatened, and sexually assaulted in captivity.
After her conviction in 1976, she served 21 months at Dublin thanks to then-President Jimmy Carter’s commutation of her sentence.
In 2001, she received a full pardon from then-President Bill Clinton.
Sara Jane Moore was released on parole in 2007 after serving 32 years of a life sentence for the attempted assassination of then-President Gerald Ford.
Before Dublin became an all-female prison, it also housed famous male inmates, including Stacey Koon and Laurence Powell.
Koon and Powell were two of five white Los Angeles police officers filmed in the violent beating of Rodney King in 1992.
They were acquitted in a California court that year, contributing to the racial tensions that led to the Los Angeles riots.
Federal authorities tried and convicted Koon and Powell for violating King’s civil rights. They served 24 months in prison.
Inmates are permitted to receive $35 from visitors, but that money can only be used for the vending machines.
Inmates are also allowed up to $320 per month to spend at the prison commissary, which offers candy, cookies, ice cream, instant coffee, toiletries, and greeting cards for sale.
There are also televisions in the lobby which are available for viewing on weekdays until 8.45pm, though the prison does provide exceptions for any special programming, including major sporting events or news.
Inmates are also allowed to play card games and board games in the lobbies.
The facilities also offer inmates job training in the fields of customer service and sales for those interested in working at its call center.
Inmates are taught telephone manners and techniques as well as computer typing.
The prison offers education courses such as English, Spanish, vocational training in computer graphics and software, and apprenticeship programs in a number of fields, including plumbing, landscaping, and construction.
Inmates are also given the option of pursuing ‘recreation and leisure’ activities and programs, according to the official Bureau of Prisons (BOP) handbook for Dublin.
They include arts and crafts, intramural team sports like softball and volleyball, and physical fitness and weight loss programs.
‘These programs help inmates develop an individual wellness concept,’ the BOP says in its guidebook.
‘Physical fitness and weight reduction programs are also important activities for an inmate and contribute to mental health, good interpersonal relations and stress reduction.
‘In addition, inmates can learn to use their free time constructively.’
While the conditions at Dublin may not be as brutal as other facilities, those who have served time behind bars say that Huffman is still in for a rough time.
For two weeks, the actress will exchange the comfortable confines of her Los Angeles home for a noisy, crowded dormitory where inmates eat prison food while their every move is watched by guards.
Holli Coulman, a former Hewlett-Packard executive who served 15 months in a different federal prison after she was convicted of fraud, told Bay Area News Group that she was routinely harassed and abused by guards.
Coulman served time at the minimum security prison in Victorville, California.
Martha Stewart, the domestic lifestyle mogul, spent five months in a minimum-security prison in West Virginia in 2004.
She was convicted of lying to federal investigators about securities violations.
In 2017, she told Katie Couric: ‘It was horrifying, and no one – no one – should have to go through that kind of indignity, really, except for murderers, and there are a few other categories.’
Stewart was asked if prison time was a ‘growth experience’.
‘That you can make lemons out of lemonade? What hurts you makes you stronger? No,’ she said.
‘None of those adages fit at all. It’s a horrible experience. Nothing is good about it, nothing.’
Huffman was reportedly driven to the prison by her husband, William H Macy. The couple are seen leaving Boston Criminal Court after her September 13 sentencing
Huffman pleaded guilty in May to fraud and conspiracy for paying an admissions consultant $15,000 to have a proctor correct her daughter Sophia’s SAT answers. Huffman and Macy are pictured with their daughters Georgia and Sophia at the Golden Globes in January
Huffman was sentenced to two weeks in prison on September 13 after she pleaded guilty to paying a $15,000 bribe to inflate her daughter’s SAT scores.
She was also fined $30,000 and given a year of supervised release plus 250 hours of community service.
‘Felicity Huffman reported today for sentencing to the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California. Ms. Huffman is prepared to serve the term of imprisonment Judge [Indira] Talwani ordered as one part of the punishment she imposed for Ms. Huffman’s actions,’ a rep for Huffman said in a statement Tuesday.
‘She will begin serving the remainder of the sentence Judge Talwani imposed – one year of supervised release, with conditions including 250 hours of community service – when she is released.’
A source close to the new inmate told Entertainment Tonight that her husband William H Macy dropped her off at the facility.
‘Felicity was resigned to the fact she has to pay her dues to society. She is looking forward to putting this all behind her,’ the source said.
‘Bill drove her there and dropped her off. Bill is supporting her and standing by her. He’s a rock and very supportive. She has a lot of family and friend support around her.’
Huffman received her sentence at US District Court for the District of Massachusetts in Boston last month after she pleaded guilty in May to fraud and conspiracy for paying an admissions consultant $15,000 to have a proctor correct her daughter Sophia’s SAT answers.
The Desperate Housewives star broke down in tears just moments before she learned her fate last month.
‘I have inflicted more damage than I could’ve ever imagined,’ she said.
She then admitted her guilt once more and told the judge her actions were ‘frightened, stupid and so wrong,’ and added that she deserved whatever sentence was handed down.
FELICITY HUFFMAN STATEMENT
I accept the court’s decision today without reservation. I have always been prepared to accept whatever punishment Judge Talwani imposed.
I broke the law. I have admitted that and I pleaded guilty to this crime. There are no excuses or justifications for my actions. Period.
I would like to apologize again to my daughter, my husband, my family and the educational community for my actions. And I especially want to apologize to the students who work hard every day to get into college, and to their parents who make tremendous sacrifices supporting their children.
I have learned a lot over the last six months about my flaws as a person. My goal now is to serve the sentence that the court has given me.
I look forward to doing my community service hours and making a positive impact on my community. I also plan to continue making contributions wherever I can well after those service hours are completed. I can promise you that in the months and years to come that I will try and live a more honest life, serve as a better role model for my daughters and family and continue to contribute my time and energies wherever I am needed.
My hope now is that my family, my friends and my community will forgive me for my actions.
That tearful display came almost 30 minutes after the hearing kicked off with the federal prosecutor assigned to the case reprimanding the actions that resulted in Huffman’s indictment and ridiculing her excuses.
Right off the bat, the prosecution commented on Huffman’s claim that it was her ‘parental anxiety’ that led her to bribe an official in order to guarantee her daughter a better SAT score.
‘With all due respect to the defendant, welcome to parenthood,’ said Assistant US Attorney Eric Rosen.
‘There’s no instruction manual. Parenthood is exhausting and stressful, but that’s what every parent goes through.’
He later noted: ‘Parenthood does not make you a felon or make you cheat. It makes you serve as a positive role model.’
The prosecution asked the judge for a one-month sentence.
Huffman’s lawyers asked that she be given a year of probation, 250 hours of community service and a $20,000 fine instead.
They argued that her crimes were less serious than those of her co-defendants in the fraud scheme.
In explaining the 14-day ruling, Judge Talwani said: ‘The outrage in this case is a system that is already so distorted by money and privilege in the first place.
‘And that in a system in that context, that you took the step of having one more advantage to put your child ahead.’
Prosecutors determined that Huffman acted without the knowledge of her husband, so Macy was not charged.
A total of 52 people have been charged in the college admissions scandal dubbed ‘Varsity Blues’.
Prosecutors said parents conspired to enhance test scores and bribed coaches to get their children into elite schools such as Harvard and USC by having them labeled as recruited athletes for sports they didn’t even play.
The mastermind of the scheme was admission consultant William ‘Rick’ Singer, who has pleaded guilty for his role.
The amount Huffman paid is relatively low compared with other bribes alleged in the scheme as some parents are accused of paying up to $6.5 million.
Fifteen parents have pleaded guilty while 19 others are fighting charges and one is still awaiting extradition in Barcelona.
Among those contesting the charges are Full House actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, who allegedly paid half a million dollars to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as fake athletes.
Loughlin and Giannulli each face up to 40 years in prison.
Lawyers for the individuals fighting the charges are due in court for a status conference in January.
Full House actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli were also implicated in the college admissions scandal but are contesting the charges. The couple (above leaving court in April) allegedly paid half a million dollars to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as fake athletes
Loughlin is seen heading to yoga around the same time Huffman reported to jail Tuesday