Scrushy's sentence reduced by 12 months - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Scrushy's sentence reduced by 12 months


U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller reduced Richard Scrushy's sentence from 82 months to 70 months today in a Montgomery courtroom. The former HealthSouth CEO was granted a new hearing for his 2006 bribery conviction after an appeals court dropped two of his charges.

Judge Fuller told Scrushy in the re-sentencing, "You are a changed man."

Scrushy took the stand and told the judge, while sniffling, that he had changed. He personally apologized to judge Fuller for attacks by his legal team.

"He is already man of God. He was ordained. He has kept that up. He has had the effect on touching these inmates and helping them," Art Leach, Scrushy's attorney, said.

Scrushy talked about suffering being separated from his wife and children. Scrushy says his prison sentence has created a hardship on his family.

"I think our whole family is different. He is different man. Our whole family is different," Leslie Scrushy said.

Despite his words, federal prosecutors say Scrushy is not a changed man because he is not accepting responsibility for his bribery conviction of former governor Don Siegelman.

As part of his sentencing, Scrushy will serve three years of supervised release and must take part in 500 hours of community service. Under his original sentencing of 82 months, he was set to be released to a halfway house by Dec. 10, 2012. It is not yet clear when he could be released to a halfway house under his new sentencing.

Leach says Scrushy could be eligible to move into a halfway house immediately, depending on the availability of halfway houses in the Houston area, where Scrushy is being held in federal prison. He would then spend six months at the halfway house and then go home to live under supervised release.

Until he's released to a halfway house, Scrushy will serve the rest of his sentence at the Beaumont Federal Correctional Complex in Beaumont, Texas. He has already served 55 months in federal prison.

Leach said Scrushy and his family plan to live in the Houston area after Scrushy's release.

"What I can't wait is for him to be on the front porch of our house and our kids riding home from school that is when going to be happy," Leslie Scrushy said.

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