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Ex-Dixon comptroller seeks release from prison over virus concerns

(WIFR)
Published: May. 11, 2020 at 10:32 AM CDT
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The former Dixon comptroller convicted of stealing nearly $54 million from the northern Illinois city is seeking release from federal prison over fears of contracting COVID-19.

Rita Crundwell used the stolen money to fund her nationally renowned horse-breeding operation and luxurious tastes. She was sentenced in 2013 to nearly 20 years in prison after being convicted of wire fraud. The 67-year-old woman’s release date is Oct. 29, 2029.

“I know at my sentencing you felt I was not given a death sentence with my projected age of release of 77, but now with my deteriorating health condition, and the danger of the COVID-19 pandemic, I feel I have been given a death sentence,” she wrote in a handwritten request to Judge Philip Reinhard filed late last month in federal court in Rockford, according to Sauk Valley Media.

Reinhard said she could seek compassionate release if she’s exhausted all administrative avenues. The attorney appointed to represent her has until Friday to submit documents. The judge’s decision could come next month.

Crundwell said she is a model minimum-security prisoner, has learned new skills and has health issues including hypertension and high cholesterol.