BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Former congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. arrived at a Baltimore facility late Thursday night from federal prison. Now he says he wants a second chance from his constituents.
The son of Civil Rights leader Reverend Jesse Jackson served 17-months for corruption.
Rick Ritter has the details.
Jackson Jr.’s family says his release papers prohibit him from contact with media. Thursday night, he says he feels good and he’s hoping to get back home to his family as quickly as possible.
WJZ was there Thursday night as former congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. reported to an East Baltimore halfway house after spending 17 months in federal prison.
“It’s been an extraordinary journey,” Jackson said.
Jackson was convicted of using $750,000 in campaign funds on a lavish lifestyle.
During the three-year scheme, Jackson admits he spent $60,000 at restaurants and nightclubs, $43,000 on a Rolex watch and more than $14,000 on dry cleaning bills.
Jackson Jr. was briefly reunited with his family Thursday morning when they picked him up from an Alabama prison and drove him to Baltimore.
“I’m happy. I’m very, very happy that I’m with my wife and my children and I’ve missed them for quite some time,” he said.
Jackson’s father says his son is ready to come home.
“I look forward to the day now that he is reunited with his family. We were very sad when he left and overjoyed today,” said Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr.
After his conviction two years ago, Jackson is now asking for his constituents to forgive and forget.
“That the American people and the people of the city of Chicago will consider me for a second chance,” he said.
Jackson’s wife, Sandi, a former Chicago alderman, was convicted of filing false tax returns. She was sentenced to a year in prison.
Sandi Jackson will serve her sentence after her husband is released.
Jesse Jackson Jr. will be at Volunteers of America until September 20 and then he must spend three years on supervised release and complete 500 hours of community service.
Jesse Jackson Jr. represented Illinois in Congress for 17 years before he took a medical leave of absence in 2012 for treatment of bipolar disorder.