Felicity Huffman Gets 14 Days in Prison for Role in College-Admissions Scheme
— Boston, MA
Actress Felicity Huffman will serve time behind bars for her part in the nationwide college admissions cheating scheme.
Huffman was sentenced to 14 days in prison, along with a $30,000 fine and community service Friday in Boston's federal court. The "Desperate Housewives" actress pleaded guiltyin May to conspiracy and fraud for paying $15,000 to boost her older daughter's SAT test scores.
Federal prosecutors had recommended that Huffman, 56, be sentenced to a month in prison, in addition to a $20,000 fine and supervised release. Her lawyers had said she should have gotten a year of probation, 250 hours of community service and a $20,000 fine.
Lesser penalties, including probation, would have meant little to someone with "a large home in the Hollywood Hills with an infinity pool," prosecutors said in a Sept. 6 filing. They added that a large fine would be "little more than a rounding error" for someone worth tens of millions of dollars.
Huffman's lawyers said she should get a year of probation, 250 hours of community service and a $20,000 fine. They said that she was only a "customer" in the scheme and that, in other cases of academic fraud, only the ringleaders have gone to prison.
Huffman arrived at court with her husband, actor William H. Macy. He had submitted a letter of support to the judge describing how Huffman has been a wonderful mother who has also occasionally struggled finding the right balance between her instincts and experts' recommendations.
In her own letter to the judge, Huffman wrote that,
"In my desperation to be a good mother I talked myself into believing that all I was doing was giving my daughter a fair shot. I see the irony in that statement now because what I have done is the opposite of fair."