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Blago in Colorado? If so, FCI Englewood says he won't find country club

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rod blagojevich.jpg
Rod Blagojevich.
Word has it that disgraced but nicely coiffed former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich would like to complete his prison sentence at FCI Englewood, a facility Forbes called one of the best places to serve time a few years back.

But ask about its reputation as a country club prison and facility public information officer John Sell bristles.

"I would not call this a country club," Sell says. "As an organization, we're kind of concerned about the perception of inmates having inappropriate comforts."

fci englewood.jpg
FCI Englewood.
That's certainly FCI Englewood's reputation, despite the joint having been the home of Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh during his '90s-era trial in Denver. Forbes notes that prisoners "can blow off steam by playing pool, ping-pong or even foosball." And the list of items available for inmate purchase, on view below -- along with the extensive prison handbook -- is certainly extensive. Residents can buy a wide variety of foods, many of them listed by their brand names (Cinnamon Graham cereal, Milky Way candy bars), plus clothing and hygiene items ranging from safety scissors and toenail clippers to a ponytail holder.

So that if Blago wants to grow out his famous locks, he'll be able to keep them under control when they start to spill down his shoulders.

Sounds extravagant -- but Sell stresses that these commissary options are "pretty typical" of what's available at low-security prisons around the country, and so are the recreation options.

If that's the case, why does he think FCI Englewood is the sort of place where current inmates like ex-Enron executive Jeff Skilling would like to pay their debt to society?

"Maybe it's the location," he speculates. "It's in Denver, near the Rocky Mountains, with nice scenery. And it's a low-level institution with nonviolent offenders."

At the same time, he emphasizes that a prison jolt shouldn't be looked upon as an extended vacation.

"Sentenced inmates here at the Federal Correctional Institution have to work," he notes. "They must have a job unless there is a medical or security reason why they're unable to do so. And we're basically a small city, so they're assigned institutional jobs serving those labor needs. They can be food service workers, orderlies keeping housing units and other areas clean, plumbers, painters, groundskeepers. And they're going to be busy while they're here. They have a very regimented day.

"We get them up about six in the morning," he continues. "Breakfast is at 6:15, and at seven, they're going to work. They work from seven to 10:30, and then go to lunch -- and around noon, they're back to work again until approximately 3:30. They have dinner about 4:45, and then they're allowed leisure time, recreation activities or the library, until around eight." At that point, they're required back at their housing unit, with lights out around 11 p.m.

In addition, FCI Englewood "provides correctional programs and activities to teach inmates to use their time constructively. And we give them incentives to develop personal responsibility, and teach them consequences for their behavior."

In the end, though, even Sell stops short of painting FCI Englewood as the Alcatraz of Colorado. As he acknowledges, "It's a pretty easy place to do your time, to be honest with you."

Hope to see you soon, Blago. In the meantime, check out the FCI Englewood commissary list and handbook below.

FCI Englewood Commissary Shopping List
FCI Englewood Handbook

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More from our Media archive: "Timothy McVeigh on Oklahoma City bombing's 15th anniversary: 'Get over it.'"


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6 comments
Jenn Jenn Jenn
Jenn Jenn Jenn

But at FCI Englewood He will have access to butterscotch pudding, a must for every inmate.

eCurmudgeon
eCurmudgeon

Why spend taxpayer money to send him to Colorado?

The Feds should make a deal to put Blagojevich in an Illinois state prison, preferably among the general inmate population.

Problem solved. Most likely within hours.

Mr Munumba Ney
Mr Munumba Ney

The judge asked for recommendations from Blago and his lawyers as to where he should do time.Blago is still free and Appeals have yet to be filed.One of Blago's arguments for Defense was he did nothing different than any other politician does anywhere else in the country; it's just politics. That argument in my opinion is valid.The governor before Blago, Ryan a Republican is doing time for public corruption. Blago is a Democrat. If Blago does time, it will likely be served in minimum security with Governor Ryan.The reason two governors were indicted one after another is Illinois has a special prosecutor appointed by Illinois politicians to tackle public corruption. Colorado has no special prosecutor and I don't expect Colorado's politicians to appoint one. The Judge called Blago self serving a description I use to describe Hickenlooper for increasing his liquor licenses by at least 4 the first year he served as mayor when he was prohibited by city charter from owning any liquor licenses. Hickenlooper put his liquor licenses in a blind trust as if he were walking around city hall and the excise license division blindfolded and with a white cane, then sold all his liquor licenses that he acquired while mayor to Wynkoop Holdings then sold his shares of stock in Wynkoop Holdings. Tweedlee Dee, Tweedlee dumb.

Guest
Guest

this guy may be a little queer but Obama and Holder should be the ones going to prison. 

James McGill
James McGill

Just as soon as you make some criminal charge, have a trial, and secure a conviction, we can discuss your statement.

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