Former Ill. Gov. George Ryan went from federal prison to halfway house to back home within a few hours on Wednesday. (photo by Randy Ness/flickr)
By Associated Press
CHICAGO - George Ryan's lawyer says the former Illinois governor has been released from a halfway house and is back at home in Kankakee.
The 78-year old Ryan was released from a federal prison in Terra Haute, Ind., early Wednesday and traveled to the halfway house in Chicago. He didn't speak to the media as he walked into the halfway house.
Attorney Jim Thompson, another former Illinois governor, says Ryan was released from the halfway house a short time later. Thompson traveled with Ryan to his home in Kankakee, where he will remain in home confinement.
Speaking from Ryan's living room, Thompson said Ryan was beaming and surrounded by his smiling grandchildren.
"Today is another step in a long journey for George Ryan," Thompson told the mass of reporters gathered earlier outside the halfway house in Chicago.
"He's in decent spirits. It is such a stark change from penitentiary life he has to become accustomed again to being on the outside," he said.
Ryan's release means Illinois no longer has the dubious distinction of having two former governors behind bars simultaneously. Ryan's successor, Rod Blagojevich, is now Illinois' lone imprisoned governor. The Democrat is serving a 14-year term for corruption at a federal prison in Colorado.