U.S. District Judge Edward Davila suggested the federal detention center in Bryan, Texas, according to a court filing, even though Holmes lived in Northern California, where she ran her blood-testing start-up for nearly 15 years before it collapsed and she was indicted in 2018.
“The court finds that family visits improve rehabilitation,” the judge wrote in the filing summarizing the terms of the sentence imposed on Davila Holmes at a hearing in San Jose, California last week. The final decision as to where Holmes is being held rests with the US Bureau of Prisons. Davila ordered her to be held in custody until April 27.
As far as prisons go, it’s a lucky draw, said Alan Ellis, a criminal defense attorney. It’s a standalone facility, he said, while explaining that unlike some other women’s facilities, it doesn’t share staff or management with a nearby men’s prison. As a result, staff don’t suffer from a “prison mentality” and are “more open-minded,” he said. Ellis said Holmes’ attorneys likely requested the location.
Holmes will face “no walls, no bars, no fences,” Ellis said. “No one wants to be kicked out because compared to other places in the prison system, this place is heaven. If you have to go it’s a good place.”
Like other federal prison camps, the Bryan facility has dormitories and a low staff-to-inmate ratio, and is “work and program-oriented,” according to the Bureau of Prisons. Bryan is about 100 miles northwest of Houston.
Legal experts predicted that Holmes would likely serve her time at a facility in Dublin, California, about 35 miles east of San Francisco. Court records show that her parents own a condo in Washington, DC. It is known that Holmes grew up in Houston. She and her partner Billy Evans have a 16-month-old boy and she was visibly pregnant at her sentencing hearing.
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According to Pink Lady, a prison consulting firm, Bryan Detention Center is home to about 900 nonviolent female inmates, most of whom are in prison for embezzlement and a variety of scams. Prison Insight, a website dedicated to exposing what it calls the “broken” US prison system, says the median age of inmates at Bryan is 32.
Programs offered at the facility include accounting technology, cosmetology, horticulture, medical transcription and coding, and small business administration.
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