Both Jacksons Get Prison Terms; He’ll Serve First

Katherine Skiba and Marina Villeneuve, Chicago Tribune, August 14, 2013

Former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. was sentenced today to 30 months behind bars and his wife, Sandi, got a year in prison for separate felonies involving the misspending of about $750,000 in campaign funds.

The Jacksons will be allowed to serve their sentences one at a time, with Jackson Jr. going first, based on the wishes of the family as expressed by Dan Webb, an attorney for Sandi Jackson.

Jackson Jr. will report to prison on or after Nov. 1, the judge said.

In addition to the 2.5 years in prison, Jackson Jr. was sentenced to three years of supervised release. Sandi Jackson was ordered to serve 12 months of supervised release following her prison term.

The judge emphasized that Sandi Jackson was sentenced to exactly 12 months, not the year-and-a-day sentence that some criminals get. Defendants sentenced to a year or less cannot qualify for time off for good behavior in prison. But those sentenced to a year and a day can qualify, which means they may end up serving only about 10 months. Under this rule, Sandi Jackson must serve the full year.

If Jackson Jr. earns time off for good behavior in prison, he would serve about 25.5 months.


Federal Judge Amy Berman Jackson, who is no relation to the defendants, addressed Jackson Jr. before announcing his term. She said people including his father had written to her urging that he be placed under supervision without going to prison.

She said that if she were to do so, it would appear as if there were two systems of justice: “one for the well-connected and one for everybody else.”

“I cannot do it,” she intoned. “And I will not do it.”


Jackson Jr. apologized for his crimes and expressed special regrets to his mother and father.

“Your honor, throughout this process I’ve asked the government and the court to hold me and only me accountable for my actions,” he said.

When Jackson Jr. spoke, his voice was firm except for the few times he wept openly and paused to dry his eyes with tissue, blow his nose and collect himself.

“I am the example for the whole Congress,” he said. “I understand that. I didn’t separate my personal life from my political activities, and I couldn’t have been more wrong.”


Jackson Jr., 48, pleaded guilty to a felony conspiracy count involving the $750,000. Sandi Jackson, 49, pleaded guilty to a related charge of failing to report about $600,000 in taxable income.


The Jacksons, both Democrats, pleaded guilty in February after a yearslong spending spree with campaign funds. Among the loot: a $43,000 Rolex watch, furs, vacations, two mounted elk heads and memorabilia ranging from a Michael Jackson fedora to an Eddie Van Halen guitar.


Jackson Jr. was in the House of Representatives from 1995 to 2012. Sandi Jackson served on the City Council from 2007 until last January. Both resigned their positions leading up to their guilty pleas.

Jackson Jr. began a mysterious medical leave of absence from Congress in June 2012 and never returned. His office said initially that he was suffering from “exhaustion,” but his lawyers later said he was being treated for severe depression and bipolar disorder.


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  • Puggg

    What about the third Jackson? When is he going to get his term?

  • borogirl54

    I can guarantee one thing, Jesse,Jr. will be back in politics. He will follow the footsteps of Marion Berry because the blacks will forgive them for what happened and he will be elected for something.

    • Viking_61

      He will probably win back his 2nd congressional district seat once he gets out of prison.

    • Roger Rykart

      Forgive never entered their brains. They probably celebrate him stealing from the man.

    • JackKrak

      Being sent away by YT is a badge of honor for a black politician back on the campaign trail – he will win the first time he tries by a huge margin.

    • MBlanc46

      Fortunately, I think he’s finished in politics. Sr. will have to get him a Budweiser distributorship.

    • I suspect that while a city mayor who likes hookers and cocaine is one thing, a corruption conviction probably finishes Jr. in national-level politics. Illinois will forget about him fairly quickly and elect another lawn-jockey of the appropriate color and socialist leanings.

    • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

      Yeah, he’ll go to church, get “washed in the blood,” and promise to turn over a new stone, or is it leaf? (That’s right, you gather stones up to throw them at someone else).

    • Greg Thomas

      Yes, he now has his street creed. He will be re-elected before he hits the streets.

  • David Ashton

    Come on, folks, where are those “I Am Jesse” campaigns?

  • bigone4u

    Jesse Senior, Obama, Rahm, the whole Chicago crew belongs in prison. Lacking that happy outcome, perhaps there is a special place in hell reserved for them.

  • White Mom in WDC

    The blytl

    • George

      The dysfunction doesn’t need to trickle down.
      It’s inherent and innate with every single one of them.

    • MBlanc46

      And the leadership is a mess because they’re black.

  • Spartacus

    “Former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. was sentenced today to 30 months behind
    bars and his wife, Sandi, got a year in prison for separate felonies
    involving the misspending of about $750,000 in campaign funds.”


  • With max time off for good behavior, he’ll only do two years and nine weeks, all at a camp. The last two or three months will be at a halfway house.

  • Viking_61

    How his father Jackson Sr. managed to avoid prison all these years is beyond me. He is the chief embezzler, liar, scam artist and rapist in the family. I spoke to a high up at NBC 5 news in Chicago and she told me that not only did Jackson Sr. always touch her excessively when she prepared him for the live camera shot, but that Jackson Sr. has 5 or 6 full time lawyers on his staff keeping him out of trouble and “paying off” victims.

  • So CAL Snowman

    Sorry Ms. Jackson, but I am for real . . . said the judge.

  • When Jackson Jr. spoke, his voice was firm except for the few times he wept openly and paused to dry his eyes with tissue, blow his nose and collect himself.

    Be a man in court Jesse Jr. Because you are going to be a woman in prison.

  • Ngati Pakeha

    Justice has not been served Judge Amy (no relation) Jackson. You have legitimized the notion of two justice systems by handing out manifestly weak sentences coupled with the fact both sentences are staggered. Both of them should be in jail right now. Why does Jackson not have to report to prison until November? So he, and his crooked father, can agitate against the “racist judicial system”? I’m sure we will hear more.

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    She said that if she were to do so, it would appear as if there were two systems of justice: ‘one for the well-connected and one for everybody else.’

    The same deal is offered to all lawbreakers, don’t you know. Convicts always get to choose where they do their time — that is if they’re rich democrats!!

    If Jackson jr. were a conservative, he’d be sent to Joliet or Marion for 12 years.

    As it is, He’ll do less than 2 1/2 years for stealing $750,000 — before obama pardons him… and jr. makes another run for congress.


    • Ngati Pakeha

      I’m a bit worried he has so much time to find mitigating circumstances so that a non-custodial sentence will be preffered. I have a real problem with the US system of prosecutorial-defense consensus. A reasonable prosecutor should be appealing the leniency of these sentences and their conditions.

    • Skip Wellington

      Did he also purchase soap-on-a-rope?

    • M&S

      Please don’t let legitimate rage drive you to irrational decisions.
      America is the highest incarcerating society on earth.
      We are also on the verge of becoming the poorest ‘first world’ nation there is, with our own penchant for nationally spending beyond our means into an overwhelming debt.
      A Medium level security prison (I honestly don’t know what Joliet and Marion are, though I assume from your attitude that they are hellholes) runs 40,000 dollars a year, a Max runs 100,000 dollars, ***_Per Prisoner_***.
      Simply because you are running them like you would a military installation with 24:7 rotating shifts, huge electrical loads and high guard:prisoner as manning ratios.
      Now, let’s back up a step and say that we don’t want to waste that kind of money locking up non-violent criminals just to be showing off our own victimization as contempt for their actions with public moneys.
      What is an alternative which would ensure that they would -never- again have access to what has already been stripped from them?
      That’s right. They sign agreements permanently restricting them from public life including not just office but speaking or dealing with amounts of money greater than 2,000 dollars.
      They do their time at home, without telephone or internet, and with GPS trackers that require them to show up, twice a month, and paint an old person’s house or pick up some groceries or mow their yards ‘under county supervision’.
      Now, the burden of sustainment is their own, they are not part of the problem feeding the ravening beast that is the federal prison system and in trade for a couple nights a month (local jails are only about 500 dollars a night) they get to show their humility.
      But what really works is that, however eloquent they are in speaking of the abuses of Whitey in keeping the black man down, they _cannot use their skills_ and so will be cut off by their own kind as useless assets with attention shifting to the next black with a mission and no felony record who steps up relegate them permanently to has-been status.
      This is how smart whites handle unruly secondary populations Bon. We don’t give out ‘been ‘ta prison!’ merit badges to non-violent offenders, we socially exile them from the very roles which would have made them valuable celebrities in the quest for black empowerment over us.
      Think Bon. It is part of what makes you special.

      • First off, if my eyes don’t fool me and you’re new here, you’re my most favorite new AR regular in a long time. You’re really coming on strong.

        Second, while the 13th Amendment prohibits slavery in general, it allows it as a punishment for crime. What you’re basically saying is that because the Jacksons aren’t violent criminals, they shouldn’t get the street cred of actually going to prison, but they should be made to be near-slaves for awhile. Which is fine by me.

      • Puggg

        There’s a major state prison in Joliet, Illinois. There is a major Federal prison near Marion, Illinois, and before the hole in the ground opened up near Florence, Colorado, the Marion Federal prison was the Federal supermax. There’s also a state prison in that part of southern Illinois, Big Muddy River, near Ina, Illinois, and easily visible from Interstate 57.

        • Florence, Colorado is a massive CDoC state and federal BoP prison complex. It’s basically a gulag town.

        • Ngati Pakeha

          Maybe he doesn’t want to do time with his own kind Puggg. The places he wants to go will be full of fraudsters etc. I can just about assure you his cellmate, if he has one, won’t be called Bubba.

      • Bon, From the Land of Babble

        Sandi Jackson, 49, pleaded guilty in a related case for failing to report about $600,000 of income on tax returns.

        Jackson Jr. stole $750,000.

        They both get to pick the prison they wish to go to.

        Would any other family in the U.S. get the same deal?


  • Romulus

    His depression was a result of his inability to figure a way out of incarceration.
    Hurray!! Nothing but a cover story until he realizes he had to pay the piper.

    • MBlanc46

      His depression was a symptom of federalindictmentitis.

      • Romulus

        Lol. Yes, I remember his malaise well.

      • Irishgirl


  • IKantunderstand


  • A Freespeechzone

    These sentences sound rather lenient–what about restitution for the hundreds of thousands of dollars spent by these selfish, entitled people who honestly believe they are being persecuted.

    Watch…Obama will pardon them…..

    • They sure do have to pay that. They forfeit everything they bought with stolen money and pay as much again out of pocket.

      US federal justice means you basically lose what you stole, and then lose that much again: double.

    • MBlanc46

      He’s supposed to be making restitution as well. There was a substantial story in the Tribune about it a couple of weeks ago.

  • dd121

    Why did the lefties throw him under the bus? They haven’t prosecuted any of the many other black crooks.

    • MBlanc46

      Black alderman and state reps are regular targets of federal corruption investigations in Chicago.

      • Federal corruption cases are doubtless popular with prosecutors. Political corruption doesn’t make the public happy, so there’s no sympathy for the perps. The cases are easy for prosecutors to win, provided the investigators do their work properly. Finally, the monetary forfeits and restitution can be huge and go straight into federal government coffers.

        The feds don’t just go after crooked black pols, either. They nailed famous white navy ace and congressman Randy “Duke” Cunningham to the proverbial wall: he received 100 months for bribery, and the feds can still go after his navy and House pensions.

        • MBlanc46

          It’s equal opportunity in Chicago, too. Blacks and whites go down (I don’t recall any Hispanics yet). It’s mainly only Dems, though, as there aren’t any Repubs any more.

  • KenelmDigby

    You notice that virtually ALL of the leaders of the black so-called ‘civil rights’ ‘struggle’ of the 1960s have very close realtives who are either criminal or corrupt.
    Malcolm X, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King and now Jesse jackson.

    • The most pathetic aspect to J.J.Jr.’s case is that if he had just waited until he decided to retire, all that money would legally have become his.


    Sentence begins in November, I guess they won’t miss any summer fambly BBQs

  • Sandi does have to serve her full year, as the article mentions, but she is eligible for a 50:50 split-sentence, with six months at a camp followed by six months at home on an ankle monitor.

  • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

    Boy oh boy, a racist and sexist sentencing rolled into one!

    I just bet his wifey was never the Lady MacBeath in this little embezzlement scam. As usual, the woman gets off for being female and now, because he is black, he gets 30 months and because they are both black “celebrities” they get to rotate so that they won’t loose their kid to Child Protection Services, which they ought to – because they’re the worst kind of white collar criminals, politicians!!!

  • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

    Where’s Peejay in Frisco? I haven’t seen a post by him for a long time. Are you him?