Oct. 15 (UPI) — Felicity Huffman reported to a Northern California prison Tuesday to begin serving her 14-day sentence for paying a bribe to help her daughter get into college, the actor’s representative said.
She will serve her time at the all-women’s Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, Calif., about 30 miles east of San Francisco. In addition to prison time, a federal judge in Massachusetts ordered her to pay a $30,000 fine, and serve 250 hours of community service and one year of supervised release.
“Ms. Huffman is prepared to serve the term of imprisonment Judge [Indira] Talwani imposed — one year of supervised release, with conditions including 250 hours of community service — when she is released,” the representative said in a statement to People.
Huffman was the first parent to be sentenced in the college admissions scandal, which engulfed several wealthy, high-profile parents.
The Desperate Housewives star admitted to paying the ringleader of the scandal, Rick Singer, $15,000 to correct wrong answers on her oldest daughter’s SAT. The cheating improved her daughter’s score 400 points from the PSAT she’d taken the previous year.
Speaking in court in September, Huffman apologized to the judge, her husband, actor William H. Macy, and her two daughters.
“I am deeply ashamed of what I have done. At the end of the day I had a choice to make. I could have said ‘no.'”
Huffman said her daughter had learning disabilities and she went looking for a guidance counselor who could help her get into the college of her choice. That’s how she met Singer, who recommended the cheating scheme.
“As warped as this sounds now, I honestly began to feel that maybe I would be a bad mother if I didn’t do what Mr. Singer was suggesting,” Huffman said before her sentencing. “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 of that statement now because what I have done is the opposite of fair. I have broken the law, deceived the education community, betrayed my daughter and failed my family.”
Fifty-one people have been charged in the scandal, including actress Lori Loughlin. They’re accused of paying more than $25 million collectively to Singer to promote their children as fake athletes with scholarships or to cheat on the SAT. So far, more than 23 people, including parents, coaches and Singer have pleaded guilty to felonies.