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How is Julie Chrisley Doing in Prison?

Julie Chrisley, half of the husband and wife duo featured on the reality show “Chrisley Knows Best,” began a 7-year prison sentence in January 2023 for tax evasion and bank fraud convictions. Julie and her husband Todd were found guilty in June 2022 of conspiring to defraud community banks out of more than $30 million of fraudulent loans.

Julie is currently serving her sentence at Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) Lexington, a low-security federal prison in Kentucky. Her husband Todd is serving his 12-year sentence at Federal Correctional Institution Pensacola in Florida. Let’s take a closer look at how Julie is handling life behind bars so far.

Her First Months in Prison

Julie, 49, reported to FCI Lexington on January 17th, 2023. The minimum-security facility houses roughly 1,400 female inmates. According to a source close to the Chrisley family, Julie had a difficult time adjusting during her first weeks in prison.

The insider reported that Julie struggled with being away from her husband and her children. She missed their family dinners and game nights. Julie also found the prison food unappetizing compared to the healthy, organic meals she cooked at home.

Additionally, Julie had issues finding privacy in the crowded facility. Their family source said, “She’s had to get used to showering and using the toilet in front of strangers, which has been a big adjustment for her.”

However, as the weeks passed, Julie has slowly adapted to the rigid prison routine and lifestyle changes. The source said Julie is keeping a positive attitude and focusing on completing her sentence so she can reunite with her family.

Her Daily Routine & Prison Job

Inmates at FCI Lexington adhere to a strict daily schedule that starts with wake up call at 6 AM. Following breakfast, inmates have work assignments on site or attend education/wellness programs until 4 PM. Julie was able to get a job in the prison commissary, likely due to good behavior.

FCI Lexington offers a Commissary Work Cadre program which allows inmates to work preparing food packages and inventorying commissary items. This gives Julie valuable experience in stocking, ordering, and accounting skills.

When not working, Julie has time in the evenings for recreation, meals, and socializing with other inmates before lights out at 10 PM. She gets some fresh air each day in the outdoor recreation spaces. The prison has walking tracks, tennis courts, and fields.

Opportunities for Self-Improvement

Inmates at FCI Lexington have access to a range of education and wellness programs to keep them constructively occupied during incarceration. These opportunities allow prisoners like Julie to work on improving themselves before release.

The prison offers adult continuing education courses in subjects like business, psychology, and sociology. Inmates can also take vocational training classes in clerical skills, accounting, cosmetology, and building trades. Julie may take accounting courses to sharpen the business acumen that made her family successful.

The facility has robust recreational programming including sports leagues, hobby crafts, and fitness classes. Julie has access to a music room, leather shop, and ceramics studio. She also can utilize walking tracks and cardio equipment to stay active.

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Additionally, FCI Lexington has religious services, counseling programs, and support groups. Julie is likely drawing on her Christian faith to find solace during this difficult chapter.

Communication with Family

One of the hardest parts of prison for any inmate is being separated from loved ones. However, FCI Lexington does allow various forms of approved communication with family on the outside.

Inmates are allowed 300 phone minutes each month to call approved contacts. Julie likely uses her phone time to check in with her children Savannah, 24, and Grayson, 16, as well as other relatives.

She can also exchange emails with friends and family through the prison’s TRU LINCS system. This secure system monitors all emails for safety. Julie is probably grateful to at least have electronic contact with her kids while serving her term.

Finally, Julie is allowed non-contact in-person visits with approved visitors twice each month. Her family members must schedule visits in advance and then communicate with Julie from across a plexiglass barrier.

Being limited to occasional phone calls, emails, and no-contact visits is surely difficult for Julie as a mother. But she is likely cherishing whatever communication she gets with her children while incarcerated.

Comparison to Other Inmates

With her 07351-043 inmate number, Julie Chrisley is now one of approximately 1,400 women serving federal time at FCI Lexington. Here is a look at how Julie’s situation compares to the average inmate’s:

  • Age – At 49 years old, Julie is on the older side of inmates at FCI Lexington whose average age is 36. Her maturity and life experience could be an asset.
  • Sentence Length – Julie’s 7-year term is longer than the average 3-year stay for inmates at this facility. She’s had to mentally prepare for serving an extended sentence.
  • Health – Julie entered prison healthy and fit, unlike some inmates with substance abuse issues or medical conditions. Her physical health is an advantage.
  • Safety – As a celebrity inmate, Julie could be a target for harassment from other prisoners. However, FCI Lexington has less violence than higher security prisons.
  • Finances – Most prisoners rely on meager prison jobs to fund commissary accounts. But Julie likely has ample money from savings to cover her expenses.
  • Support – Many inmates lose touch with family on the outside. Fortunately, Julie has close relatives who are standing by her while she serves her time.

So while prison is undoubtedly a jarring adjustment, Julie Chrisley’s circumstances could be far worse. Her maturity, health, finances, and family support put her in a better position to manage her sentence.

Notable News from Prison

Aside from the difficult transition period in January, a few other noteworthy details have emerged about Julie’s time in prison so far:

  • She made a friend early on – Julie bonded with a 79-year-old woman named Mema who gave her an extra blanket
  • She’s grown closer to God – Julie told her daughter Savannah that prison is bringing her even closer to her Christian faith
  • She’s keeping up appearances – Sources say Julie spends mornings doing her hair and makeup neatly before heading to her commissary job
  • She’s had a few visitors – Julie’s mother Nanny Faye and her daughter Savannah have reportedly visited FCI Lexington to see her

While news is limited, these snippets indicate Julie is establishing connections in prison, finding comfort in religion, maintaining some normalcy with grooming routines, and getting welcomed visits from family.

What Happens After Release?

Julie Chrisley is scheduled to be released from FCI Lexington on August 20, 2029 at the age of 59. She will have served the full 7 years of her prison term, with inmates typically serving 85% of their total sentence (minus any credits earned).

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The Chrisley family is already anticipating Julie’s homecoming years down the road. Their spokesperson shared, “The family is optimistic and hopeful that the next seven years will pass quickly.”

Julie’s return to normal life after so long in prison will likely be difficult. Former inmates often struggle to find housing and employment due to their criminal record. Julie may also need time to rebuild relationships with her family members.

However, Julie will have the advantage of a supportive family and financial resources upon release. She may be able to lean on her husband Todd, who would be out of prison by then. The Chrisleys still own their former $3 million Nashville mansion.

The family has also hinted that once the parents complete their sentences, they may move to Florida to start fresh. Wherever Julie ends up after prison, she’ll surely be grateful to close this chapter of her life.

How is Julie Handling the Prison Environment?

Adjusting to the stark conditions and restrictive policies of a federal prison is undoubtedly a shocking transition for anyone. For Julie Chrisley, a woman accustomed to a posh lifestyle, her new reality at FCI Lexington has required a major shift.

Based on limited available reports, here is an assessment of how Julie is faring so far with the various aspects of prison life:

Social Interactions

Julie’s outgoing and outspoken personality seemingly makes her well-equipped to relate to fellow inmates. She has bonded with certain women like her older friend Mema. Her Christian faith probably also helps Julie find common ground. However, she may struggle with lack of privacy.

Daily Routine

The extremely regimented schedule at FCI Lexington requires discipline and stamina. Julie seems up for the challenge so far. Her commissary job provides a sense of purpose. She maintains fitness with exercise options.


For a woman used to a luxurious lifestyle, Julie is surely disappointed in the prison’s utilitarian facilities. However, she recognizes the value of educational opportunities. She may miss organic food and products.


With her family’s support, Julie can connect with kids through occasional visits, calls, and emails. But after constant family interaction before, she probably feels the pain of physical separation acutely.

Mental Health

So far Julie seems to be maintaining a generally positive attitude and relying on faith. But years of incarceration will require emotional endurance. Depression could set in over time in the isolating environment.


FCI Lexington has lower levels of danger and violence than higher security prisons. But Julie has to be somewhat wary of harassment from fellow inmates due to her celebrity status.

Post-Release Plans

Julie can look ahead to returning home to her family, unlike inmates lacking resources. But she’ll have challenges readjusting to normal life after so long incarcerated. Employment may be hard with a criminal record.

Overall, while any prison stint is miserable, Julie’s circumstances could certainly be far more harrowing. Her privilege, maturity, and family support system are invaluable assets as she navigates her sentence as best she can.

How Does Julie’s Prison Compare to Todd’s?

Julie and Todd Chrisley are serving out their sentences concurrently at different federal prisons in different states. Todd is doing his time at FCI Pensacola in Florida. Let’s compare the key distinctions between the two facilities:<div class=”table-responsive”>

Prison FactorsJulie’s FCI LexingtonTodd’s FCI Pensacola
Security LevelMinimumMedium
Total Inmates~1,400 female~1,500 male
Typical Age36 years old39 years old
AmenitiesTrack, tennis courts, cosmetologyBaseball, flag football, landscaping
Work ProgramsCommissary, food serviceOrderly, plumbing, cooking
Communication300 phone mins, email, visitsLimited email, costly calls
SafetyLess violence than higher levelsMore assaults than lower levels

The key takeaways are that Julie’s prison is lower security with more open space and amenities. Todd faces more restrictions and risks at a tougher facility. However, he may find useful trade skills through work programs not offered at Julie’s prison.

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Both Chrisleys are making the best of their situation. But Julie likely has a slight advantage in serving her time at the less intense facility.

What are the Broader Implications of the Chrisleys’ Sentences?

The Chrisley case sends a strong message to the public about the consequences of financial crimes. Beyond just punishing Julie and Todd, their convictions and imprisonment have larger implications for society and the justice system.

Impact on Family

First and foremost, Julie and Todd’s absence deeply affects their close-knit family. Their children now have both parents behind bars. Their grandchildren are missing beloved caregivers. Responsibilities shift to older kids like Savannah and Grayson. Holidays and milestones feel empty. Financially, the family has lost two breadwinners. The kids face stigma having convicted parents. They all long for the family to be whole again.

Significance for Fans

The Chrisleys cultivated an image as a picture-perfect Southern family. Their fans admired their close bonds and humor. Now followers feel betrayed learning it was partly funded by fraud. Yet many fans continue to support Julie and Todd during their sentences. The Chrisleys’ profession of Christian faith also factors into fans’ reactions. Overall, it’s a cautionary tale about not blindly idolizing celebrities’ lives.

Deterrence for Others

Legal experts say a key purpose of imprisonment is to deter future crimes. The Chrisleys receiving lengthy sentences tells the public that even minor financial crimes can land you behind bars for years. Other reality stars and public figures may think twice before fudging numbers. Especially with tax fraud, the IRS now has made an example of the Chrisleys for aggressive prosecution.

Ethics for Reality TV

Reality television often depicts exaggerated wealth and luxury. Now audiences should ponder how exactly stars like the Chrisleys afford their lifestyles. Producers may need to better vet casts’ backgrounds. And viewers might question images of materialism on reality TV moving forward. Do morals and ethics receive enough attention behind the scenes?

While Julie and Todd Chrisley broke the law, their case spotlights important questions about family, fame, ethics, and deterrence. Their prison experiences will impact perceptions of reality TV, celebrity, and values.


In summary, Julie Chrisley has faced substantial challenges since starting her prison sentence at FCI Lexington in January 2023. Leaving behind her luxurious lifestyle and tight-knit family has surely been an agonizing transition. The restrictive prison environment demands major adaptation.

However, reports suggest that Julie is slowly adjusting to the routine, finding purpose in her commissary job, and relying heavily on her faith during this tribulation. She is taking advantage of opportunities for self-improvement like educational courses. Communication with loved ones also provides essential emotional support.

Comparatively, Julie’s minimum security facility may offer slightly more privileges than the tougher conditions her husband Todd faces. But any form of incarceration brings profound hardship. Julie must find mental resilience to persevere each day and year serving the remainder of her 7-year sentence.

Her eventual homecoming promises joyful relief and fresh starts for the Chrisley family. Julie’s imprisonment provides a stern warning and lesson to others about the real consequences of financial crimes and betraying the public’s trust. While the Chrisleys’ reality now seems far from the glamour they once projected, there is always opportunity for redemption.

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About us

We are dedicated to exploring the intricacies of prison life and justice reform through firsthand experiences and expert insights.

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Welcome to ‘Prison Inside,’ a blog dedicated to shedding light on the often hidden and misunderstood world within correctional facilities. Through firsthand accounts, personal narratives, and insightful reflections, we delve into the lives of those who find themselves behind bars, offering a unique perspective on the challenges, triumphs, and transformations that unfold within the confines of these walls.

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