A 76-year-old woman named Gwen Levi was granted house arrest in June 2020. Over a year later, she missed a few calls from her probation officers while taking a computer processing class. Gwen’s four-hour absence was deemed an “escape” and she was ordered back to jail. Now, a district judge has given Gwen another opportunity by granting a compassionate release, according to The Washington Post.
Gwen reportedly filed for compassionate release before receiving house arrest last year. Judge Deborah K. Chasanow, of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, granted that request on Tuesday. According to the court documents, Judge Deborah said Gwen “has done well on home confinement, the current question of the missed call notwithstanding.”
After the COVID-19 pandemic threatened the health of prison populations, about 4,500 people were granted the opportunity to serve their sentences at home. Gwen Levi was among that list, after serving 16 years of a 24-year sentence for drug conspiracy charges. As previously reported, she began volunteering, reconnecting with her children and even learning new skills.
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“Because of her release to home confinement, the most pressing initial concerns (COVID, age, and health) were addressed,” Judge Deborah wrote in her opinion. “The court concludes that it would do little (if anything) to serve the goals of sentencing to require her to return to full custody.”
At the time news broke of her arrest, Gwen was reportedly feeling “devastated” saying that she was “attempting to do all the right things.” Still, officials allegedly told her attorney Sapna Mirchandani that her case would be treated “as if she was robbing a bank.”
Now, Gwen’s initial sentence has been reduced to time served, which totals 16 years across several federal facilities. However, Sapna shared that Gwen will have to report to a probation officer for five years. Although, the conditions of her release this time around are less restrictive and she will be able to file for “early termination of supervision” in the next year.
Gwen was reportedly set to be released on Tuesday night, but The Washington Post reports they were unable to reach her for comment.
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