Real Housewives of New Jersey star Joe Giudice starts his 41-month sentence bankruptcy fraud today, leaving his 10,000 square foot mansion behind for dorm-style living at New Jersey’s FCI Fort Dix.
What will life be like behind bars and how often will Joe’s wife Teresa and the couple’s four daughters be able to make the 90-minute trip to visit during his almost 3.5 year stay?
According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, there are currently 4,556 male inmates serving an average sentence of 89 months at FCI Fort Dix. There are no bars or locks on the rooms within the housing units at the low-security prison, but Joe won’t be sleeping in his own room with a king-size bed.
Most inmates sleep in steel bunk beds with up to 18 men in a single dorm-style room with a common bathroom and individual lockers that store a limited amount of personal items.
According to Forbes, there are many inmates who are serving time for white-collar crimes, but many men will have a history of violence, so Joe will have to choose his prison friends wisely. A prison insider states that serving time at FCI Fort Dix is “not a cakewalk” and there are frequent fights between inmates.
During his 41-month stay at FCI Fort Dix, Giudice may run into Apollo Nida, the estranged husband of “Real Housewives of Atlanta” Star Phaedra Parks. Although the two reality stars don’t know each other, they have something in common — they are both in prison for fraud.
According to ABC, Apollo will be released around the same time as Joe — he is currently serving an eight-year prison stint for bank fraud and identity theft and has a release date of August 2020.
Joe will be assigned a job during his prison term, but he won’t be making millions — the starting base wage is $.23 per hour. He’ll have to save his pennies — or get Teresa to make a deposit in his prison account – to shop in the commissary for a long list of items including ice cream, cupcakes, chips, clothing, playing cards, and toenail clippers.
A photo posted by Milania (@milania4033) on Mar 22, 2016 at 10:17am PDT
Teresa and the couple’s four daughters will be able to visit Joe while he serves time in prison. There are no visits on Tuesdays and Wednesday, but on any other day, Joe can have visitors between 8:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. Due to overcrowding during weekends and holidays, inmates are given one point for each weekend or holiday visit, with a limit of four points per month.
In addition to visits, Joe will be able to talk to his wife and daughters by phone, but he will have to wait in line to use one and will have a limit of 300 minutes of use per month (400 minutes during November and December).
According to the New York Daily News, cameras will be rolling when Joe leaves for prison on Wednesday. Bravo will film his final goodbyes to Teresa and the girls when they wake up, and they are planning to film Giudice right up until the time he turns himself in at FCI Fort Dix so they can get “as much footage as possible.“