The list of reality TV stars who’ve gone from television to prison is getting longer, now that two cable reality stars are going to prison for more than a decade each.
They’ll join a significant roster of major reality TV stars and smaller players who’ve gone to prison. Here’s a non-exhaustive list:
- Survivor Borneo winner Richard Hatch spent five years in prison
- Big Brother 9 winner Adam Jasinski was sentenced to four years in prison
- Big Brother 9’s Matty McDonald went to prison for three years
- The Real Housewives of New Jersey Teresa Guidice spent 11 months in prison
- Jersey Shore’s Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino served eight months in prison
- So You Think You Can Dance choreographer Alex Da Silva spent nine years in prison
- Property Wars star Scott Menaged was sentenced to 17 years in prison
- Dance Moms star Abby Lee Miller was sentenced to one year in prison but was released early
- The Real World San Francisco’s David “Puck” Rainey was sentenced to two years in prison
- Making the Band star Lou Pearlman died in prison
Todd and Julie Chrisley will soon know prison
Today, Chrisley Knows Best stars Todd Chrisley and Julie Chrisley were each sentenced today, with Todd getting the longer sentence: more than a decade of incarceration.
They were convicted of tax evasion and fraud earlier this year by a jury in Atlanta.
Atlanta’s ABC affiliate, WSB TV, reported Monday that the “federal judge sentenced Todd Chrisley to 12 years in prison plus 16 months probation. His wife, Julie, was sentenced to 7 years in prison, plus 16 months probation.”
In a press release, IRS Special Agent in Charge in Atlanta, James E. Dorsey, said:
“The Chrisleys defrauded financial institutions and the Federal Government through tax evasion and other fraudulent means in an effort to minimize their tax liability, but project an image of wealth. This sentencing serves notice that no matter a person’s celebrity status, there are severe consequences for defrauding the American tax system.”
According to an earlier WSB report, Chrisley’s attorney asked for “a combined sentence of limited incarceration, supervised release and restitution,” in part because Todd’s mother and brother are both being treated for cancer now.”
But the prosecutors’ 71-page sentencing memo asked for between 17 and 22 years for Todd, and 10 to 13 years for Julie, so they received more lenient sentences. The memo said:
“The seriousness of their actions is further underscored by the fact that neither defendant has expressed remorse for their crimes, instead continuing to blame others for their own criminal conduct. Given the seriousness of the Chrisleys’ crimes, a lengthy period of incarceration is warranted.”
Chrisley Knows Best has been cancelled
Their show has been on USA Network since March of 2014, which means Todd will spend more time in prison than he’s spent getting famous on TV.
USA Network last aired episodes of season nine in August; season 10 had been ordered but was not filmed.
Deadline reports that both Chrisley Knows Best and Chase and Savannah’s spin-off Growing Up Chrisley have been cancelled, and so has E!’s Love Limo, which Todd was going to host.
Todd: ‘children should have accountability’
In 2014, I interviewed the Chrisley family, and Todd told me why they decided to expose their lives to the world on TV:
“We certainly did it for the branding opportunities, and the fact that we felt like we could contribute something to that landscape. We contribute a certain level of wholesomeness to that field—that we want the world to see that children should have accountability for their actions, and they should respect their parents, and that the parents should give the child a reason to respect them.”
I wonder if he’s thrilled that the whole world is now seeing that adults should have accountability for their actions, too.