header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Santa Clarita CA
Today in
S.C.V. History
September 20
1954 - C-46 cargo plane crashes at Saugus Drunk Farm; Civil Air Patrol chaplains parachute to safety [story]

BOSTON — “Full House” actress Lori Loughlin was sentenced to two months in jail Friday for her part in the Varsity Blues college admissions scandal, with the sentencing judge saying he was “dumbfounded” by her “gall.”

Loughlin pleaded guilty along with her husband to paying $500,000 to college admissions consultant Rick Singer to get her daughters into the University of Southern California as recruits for the crew team even though neither daughter rowed.

“You had more money than you could possibly need, a beautiful home in sunny southern California, a fairy tale life,” said U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton.

“And yet here you are, a convicted felon. And for what? For the inexplicable desire to have even more,” Gorton scolded her, calling her actions “avarice taken to the highest degree.”

Loughlin was also given a $150,000 fine, 100 hours of community service and two years of supervised release as part of a plea deal with the government.

“I made an awful decision,” Loughlin told the court. “I thought I was acting out of love for my children, but in reality it only undermined my daughters’ abilities and accomplishments.”

Loughlin, who sat unsmiling in a white blouse, acknowledged that she also “exacerbated existing inequalities in society.”

“I am truly, profoundly and deeply sorry and I am ready to face the consequences and make amends,” she added.

Earlier Friday her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, was sentenced to five months in prison, a $250,000 fine, 250 hours of community service and two years of supervised release under a separate plea agreement.

Giannulli was more culpable than Loughlin because he “engaged more frequently with Singer, directed the bribe payments to USC and Singer, and personally confronted his daughter’s high school counselor to prevent the scheme from being discovered, brazenly lying about his daughter’s athletic abilities,” according to the government.

Loughlin was accused of going along with the scheme and staging photos of her daughters using a rowing machine.

“This type of behavior is not simply overzealous parenting,” said prosecutor Kristen Kearney, adding that it reflects “a privileged and entitled attitude for which prison is the only answer.”

The prosecution said the plea-deal sentences are comparable to those of other prominent parents charged in the scheme while reflecting the couple’s “decision to allow their children to become complicit in crime.”

Evidence emerged that the daughters, who were minors at the time, willfully participated in the staged photos and were copied on emails between their parents and Singer.

“Desperate Housewives” actress Felicity Huffman had a considerably lighter sentence; she spent 11 days in jail late last year after pleading guilty to paying $15,000 to have someone correct her daughter’s SAT exam, in addition to a $30,000 fine and 250 hours of community service. But Huffman didn’t involve her daughter in the cheating.

In all, at least 53 people have been charged with participating in the scandal in which parents paid Singer more than $25 million between 2011 and 2018.

Loughlin and her husband resisted pleading guilty for more than a year before agreeing to the deals in May, and there has been speculation that they finally accepted a plea bargain in order to spare their daughters, Isabella and Olivia Jade, from being charged themselves or being called to testify against them.

Olivia Jade is a former Instagram and YouTube star who had some 2 million followers before the scam came to light. The scandal also caused Loughlin to be dropped from the final season of “Fuller House” on Netflix as well as “When Calls the Heart” on the Hallmark Channel.

Loughlin “lost the acting career she had spent 40 years building” and became “the undisputed face of the national scandal,” defense lawyer William Trach of Latham & Watkins told the court, noting that she was raised in a working-class family that lived paycheck-to-paycheck and didn’t go to college herself.

Loughlin is a charitable person who once paid a friend’s mortgage after he developed cancer and has been “devastated” by the harm to her relationship with her daughters, Trach claimed.

But prosecutor Justin O’Connell argued that public humiliation in the media was no reason not to send Loughlin to jail. A waiter who loses his job after committing a crime suffers just as much proportionately, he said, and “the waiter and the actress should be treated the same.”

Loughlin pleaded guilty to mail and wire fraud. Gorton noted that there was no direct financial loss caused by the fraud but “there certainly was a loss to the overall educational system in this country.”

“We can only hope,” he continued, “that you will spend the rest of your charmed life … making amends to the system that you have harmed.”

Earlier in the day Gorton had harsh words for Loughlin’s husband at his own sentencing hearing.

“I see lots of drug dealers, gun runners and people who have committed violent crimes” who are “living in squalid conditions and didn’t know better,” Gorton said. “You certainly did know better.”

“You were not stealing bread to feed your family,” Gorton continued. “You have no excuse.”

The plea deals were unusual in that they were contingent on Gorton imposing the recommended sentences. If Gorton had rejected the sentences as inadequate, Loughlin and her husband could have withdrawn their pleas.

Gorton, who was appointed by President George H.W. Bush, “has a reputation for issuing stronger sentences than his peers,” USA Today reported in 2019.

The sentencing hearing was held via a Zoom conference due to the pandemic.

— By Thomas F. Harrison, CNS

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

1 Comment

  1. Alice says:

    Bye bye Aunt Becky, hope you serve the full time. Congratulations, you epitomize White privilege, ugh

Leave a Comment

Friday, Sep 18, 2020
A new art exhibit titled “ABC Canvas” and depicting every letter in the alphabet has come to Santa Clarita City Hall’s First Floor Gallery.
Friday, Sep 18, 2020
The COVID-19 quarantine provided some with time to catch up on their favorite TV series or try a new hobby, but for Valencia resident Jeff Bomberger, it has earned him a ticket to the Catalina Film Festival.
Thursday, Sep 17, 2020
Here is a list of Santa Clarita arts-related virtual and in-person events through October:
Thursday, Sep 17, 2020
The Newhall Family Theatre, in partnership with Mark II Entertainment, is proud to announce the debut of a new web series: Talking Backstage.
Wednesday, Sep 16, 2020
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has voted 18 students as winners of the 47th Student Academy Awards competition.
Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1954 - C-46 cargo plane crashes at Saugus Drunk Farm; Civil Air Patrol chaplains parachute to safety [story]
Assembly Bill 1457, authored by Assembly Members Cervantes and Reyes, and supported by Santa Clarita’s Senator Scott Wilk, Assemblyman Tom Lackey and Assemblywoman Christy Smith, represents an important step forward in jumpstarting California’s economic recovery.
AB 1457 Will Boost Recovery | Commentary by Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook
1863 - Gen. Edward F. Beale loans money to A.A. Hudson and Oliver P. Robbins to erect toll house in Newhall Pass [story]
toll house
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died Friday at her family home in Washington of complications from pancreatic cancer, the high court said. She was 87.
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dead at 87
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Friday confirmed 22 new deaths and 1,281 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, including 25 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley, where Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital reported its 23rd COVID death.
Friday COVID-19 Roundup: 57th SCV Resident Dies; Cases Tally Up to 5,762
As wildfires rage up and down the West Coast, a panel of experts from Stanford University said Friday that exposure to high levels of pollution from wildfire smoke is the equivalent of smoking seven cigarettes a day.
Health Toll of Wildfire Smoke: Like 7 Cigarettes a Day
The William S. Hart Union High School District is accepting applications for a new member of its Personnel Commission.
Hart District Seeks New Personnel Commission Member
A new art exhibit titled “ABC Canvas” and depicting every letter in the alphabet has come to Santa Clarita City Hall’s First Floor Gallery.
‘ABC Canvas’ Art Exhibit Unveiled at Santa Clarita City Hall Gallery
The COVID-19 quarantine provided some with time to catch up on their favorite TV series or try a new hobby, but for Valencia resident Jeff Bomberger, it has earned him a ticket to the Catalina Film Festival.
Valencia Filmmaker’s Short Comedy to Premiere at Catalina Film Festival
Members of the civilian Los Angeles County Sheriff Department watchdog group on Thursday called for Sheriff Alex Villanueva to resign over his department’s lack of transparency on fatal police shootings and other issues.
L.A. County Sheriff Ignores Oversight Panel Demand to Resign
A three-story storage facility in Canyon Country is headed to the Santa Clarita City Council for consideration following design changes approved by the city's Planning Commission on Tuesday.
Planning Commission OK’s 3-Story Storage Facility in Canyon Country
Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday signed AB 1876, further expanding access to the California Earned Income Tax Credit to ensure all California tax filers, specifically undocumented ITIN filers who are otherwise eligible, may qualify for the CalEITC and the Young Child Tax Credit.
Newsom Signs Bill Expanding Earned Income Tax Credit
Several landlords have filed a lawsuit against the state, Los Angeles County and multiple Southern California cities, including Santa Clarita, over eviction bans, seeking reimbursement for unpaid rent due to COVID-19 eviction-protection ordinances.
Landlords Sue Santa Clarita, Others Over Eviction Bans
The California Highway Patrol has designated the week beginning Sunday, September 20, as Child Passenger Safety Week statewide.
CHP: Child Passenger Safety Week in California Begins Sunday
Under a new worker protection law signed Thursday by Gov. Gavin Newsom, California businesses must inform employees if they were potentially exposed to COVID-19 at the workplace.
Newsom Signs New COVID-19 Worker Protection Law
Washington and Oregon, members of the Western States Pact, will participate with California in piloting a project to test promising exposure notification technology, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced Thursday.
Washington, Oregon Join California in Apple-Google COVID-19 Exposure Notification Project
1962 - Articles of incorporation filed for Golden State Memorial Hospital on Lyons Avenue [story]
Golden State Hospital
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Thursday 38 new deaths and 1,160 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, with 5,737 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Thursday COVID-19 Roundup: 257,271 Cases Countywide, 38 New Deaths; 5,737 SCV Cases
SACRAMENTO — Gov. Gavin Newsom today signed legislation ensuring millions more Californians can utilize Paid Family Leave benefits they pay for without the fear of job loss.
Newsom Inks Extension of Paid Family Leave Bill
The city of Santa Clarita is excited to announce the Kidz Play After School program for fall 2020.
Online Registration Now Available for Fall Kidz Play After School Program
Here is a list of Santa Clarita arts-related virtual and in-person events through October:
Santa Clarita Arts Calendar: ARTober, Calls for Artists, SOS Theatre Festival
The Supplemental Coronavirus Relief Fund Spending Plan approved Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors includes an allocation to L.A. County Library to provide digital support to individuals and communities disproportionately impacted by COVID-19, specifically by expanding the recently-launched Laptop & Hotspot Loan program that allows cardholders to borrow a Chromebook and wireless hotspot kit, and by extending the WiFi network range at libraries, to cover parking lots.
Supes Approve L.A. County Library Funding to Help Bridge Digital Divide
Following a summer hiatus, the Santa Clarita homeless task force met Wednesday to discuss the 2020 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count for the first time since its release — and concluded that keeping a separate local count may be the solution to an apparent undercount of local homeless in the countywide tally.
Santa Clarita Task Force Keeping Homeless Count Separate
Santa Clarita Public Library is excited to launch the First Library Card Program for children in our community.
City Inviting Children 6 & Under to Sign Up for First Library Card
%d bloggers like this: