Former Illinois Governor Found Guilty on Most Counts

June 27, 2011

When Rod Blagojevich left his Chicago home this morning to find out his fate in court, he told the reporters perched outside, “My hands are shaking, my knees are weak. It’s in God’s hands.”

Actually, it was in the juror’s hands, and that jury on Monday found the former Illinois governor guilty on 17 of the 20 public corruption charges against him.

Blagojevich home

The Blagojevich home at 2934 Sunnyside Ave. in Chicago.

So, could Blagojevich lose his Ravenswood Manor home?

Blagojevich is charged, among many things, with trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama, who went off to be President of the United States.

Half the counts against him are wire fraud and the other half involve extortion and bribery. Many of the counts carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in jail.

That means Rod Blagojevich could get a 300-year sentence, though he won’t.

The jury acquitted Rod on one count of bribery and were deadlocked on two counts of attempted extortion.

In jail, Blagojevich, 54, won’t be able to make money via the media circuit, as he did following his arrest in December 2008. With no income to cover his fines and expenses, the government could seize his home.

But, of course, the saga is probably not over. Blagojevich’s attorneys will most likely appeal today’s court decision. Until then, a status hearing for sentencing has been set for August 1, and Blagojevich is not allowed to leave the area without permission from the judge.

So, for now, Rod, his wife Patti, their two young daughters, Amy and Anne, and their dog, Skittles, can take refuge in their Chicago home on Sunnyside Avenue.

“Patti and I, obviously, are very disappointed by the outcome,” Blagojevich told reporters after the verdict was read. “I, frankly, am stunned. There is not much left to say other than we want to get home to our little girls and explain things to them.”

Good luck with that.

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