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Former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. transferred after prison dispute

Jesse JacksJr. (pictured 2011)  |  Charles Dharapak~AP

Jesse Jackson Jr. (pictured in 2011) | Charles Dharapak~AP

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Updated: May 8, 2014 9:58AM



Former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. has been moved from a federal prison in North Carolina to a minimum-security prison camp in Montgomery, Ala., after clashing with prison officials and being placed in solitary confinement, a source told the Chicago Sun-Times.

The 49-year-old former Chicago congressman had been advising other inmates in North Carolina about their rights in prison, according to the source, who said a guard took exception to that.

As a result, the longtime South Side politician was placed in solitary confinement for four or five days more than a month ago, the source said.

A hearing was held, the source said, and Jackson was cleared of any wrongdoing and asked for a transfer to another prison.

The source said family members were concerned about Jackson’s welfare after the incident and went to visit him in prison.

It took about a month for the transfer to go through, the source said, and Jackson was moved to the prison camp at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama.

A federal Bureau of Prisons spokeswoman said Saturday she could not comment on an inmate’s move. But the Bureau of Prisons’ website now lists Jackson as an inmate at the Montgomery facility, and family members — including his father, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, brother Jonathan Jackson and sister Santita Jackson — confirmed that Saturday.

Jonathan Jackson said he’s very happy that his brother has been moved.

Santita Jackson said her brother entered prison wanting to make a “contribution” and “interact well” with the people around him.

“He wanted to be of service to people serving time with him,” she said.

Jackson is serving a 21/2 -year sentence after pleading guilty to illegally using campaign money. He entered prison last October and is due to be released on Dec. 31, 2015, according to the Bureau of Prisons.

The prison camp in Montgomery was where Jackson initially asked to be sent after his conviction.

“I want to make it a little inconvenient for everybody to get to me,” he said, through tears, at his sentencing last year.

The Alabama prison camp has housed several government figures over the years, including former Nixon administration Attorney General John Mitchell.

Rev. Jackson, reached in Tokyo, said his son, who suffers from bipolar disorder and depression, is “doing much better.”

“He’s been very disciplined in his health-recovery regimen,” said the elder Jackson, who’s in Japan leading a Rainbow PUSH delegation meeting with executives of automakers Toyota, Nissan and Honda, “He’s been doing a lot of reading and writing.”

Santita Jackson said, “He is so much better, and, for that, we are all grateful.”

She said family members have been visiting her brother regularly.

“Of course, we’ve been seeing him through this,” she said. “He has visitation, and we have been going to see him.

“He’s in prison. He’s not disappeared. He is our family. We love him, and we go see him.”

Jackson also has been getting regular visits from his wife, former Ald. Sandi Jackson, and their two children. Sandi Jackson, who also pleaded guilty to charges related to looting campaign funds, was sentenced to a year in prison and has been living in Washington. She will serve her time after her husband is released.

Contributing: Becky Schlikerman



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