Former state Rep. Reggie Fullwood wants federal probation to end early; prosecutors disagree
2017 sentencing resulted in home detention, supervised release instead of prison
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Former state Rep. Reggie Fullwood is asking a federal judge for an early end to his three-year probation term, a request which federal prosecutors said should not be granted.
Fullwood, a former Democratic lawmaker from Jacksonville, pleaded guilty in 2016 to charges of wire fraud and failing to file a tax return. He had been accused of diverting contributions to his reelection campaign for his own personal use, including purchases of jewelry, alcohol and flowers.
In February 2017, a judge gave Fullwood a sentence of time served, plus 180 days on home detention and three years' supervised release. As Fullwood was never in custody before his trial, the "time served" only amounted to the day of his arrest. Sentencing guidelines had called for 15 to 21 months in federal prison for Fullwood, but the judge departed from that in his sentencing.
On March 25, Fullwood filed a motion asking to terminate his probation early, after 25 months. He states he is fulfilling the terms of his probation, including completing 550 hours of community service, which was greater than the 450 hours required by his sentence. Fullwood wrote that his probation officer stated he would not oppose early termination and that his mental health therapist also supports early termination. The former lawmaker also stated he has an "employment opportunity" that requires he not be on probation and argued that terminating probation would allow him to have a consistent income and better take care of his family and pay financial obligations to the court.
On Thursday, prosecutors filed a response to Fullwood's motion, opposing the request. They argued there's no reason to treat his case any differently than any other case involving a term of supervised release. The government lawyers also argued that in effect, he's already had a reduction in sentence, since he did not receive a sentence of imprisonment. Prosecutors said that while Fullwood's compliance with the terms of his release is commendable, it does not warrant early termination.
The response from prosecutors also points out Fullwood's motion never mentioned the $42,545 in restitution the court has ordered him to pay or how much he had paid. Prosecutors checked with Fullwood's probation officer, who said he has paid approximately $2,500 of that amount at the $100 per month that was ordered by the court.
A federal judge will make the final decision on Fullwood's request.
Fullwood represented a portion of Jacksonville in the Florida House from 2010 to 2016, resigning his seat after pleading guilty. He previously served on the Jacksonville City Council.
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