The Latest: Hastert victim sister says prison brings closure

AP News
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Posted: Jun 22, 2016 6:25 PM

ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) — The Latest on former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert arriving at a Minnesota prison to begin serving a 15-month sentence in his hush-money case (all times local):

5 p.m.

The sister of one high school student who Dennis Hastert sexually abused says the former U.S. House speaker entering prison brings her some closure.

Jolene Burdge spoke in a phone interview Wednesday hours after Hastert reported to prison to serve a 15-month sentence in a hush money case. The case revealed Hastert had abused at least four boys at Yorkville High School more than 35 years ago.

Burdge says she never thought the day would come that the Illinois Republican would go to prison. And she says the fact he has restores some of her faith in the justice system.

Burdge told Hastert's sentencing hearing in April that Hastert abused her brother, Stephen Reinboldt, throughout his years at Yorkville High. Reinboldt died of AIDS in 1995.

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1:50 p.m.

Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert was accompanied by one person as he wheeled himself into a Minnesota prison to start serving a sentence for his hush-money case.

Hastert, who uses a wheelchair, wore a black shirt and camouflage pants as he wheeled himself into the complex in Rochester between high, razor-wire fencing. A woman followed him carrying crutches, a plastic bag and a brown box.

The 74-year-old Illinois Republican reported to the prison at around noon Wednesday to start serving his 15-month sentence in a case focused on his sexual abuse of several high school wrestlers.

The Rochester prison specializes in health care. Hastert is diabetic and suffered a stroke last year.

Hastert is one of the highest-ranking U.S. politicians to ever go to prison, where he'll be known as Inmate No. 47991-424.

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12:10 p.m.

Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert has arrived at a Minnesota prison to serve his 15-month sentence in a hush-money case involving revelations that he sexually abused at least four boys when he coached wrestling at an Illinois high school.

The 74-year-old Illinois Republican arrived around noon Wednesday at the federal prison in Minnesota where he will be known as Inmate No. 47991-424. Hastert is one of the highest-ranking U.S. politicians to go to prison.

Judge Thomas Durkin branded Hastert "a serial child molester" when he imposed the sentence in April.

Hastert wasn't charged with child abuse because of statutes of limitation. He coached at Yorkville High School from 1965 to 1981.

Hastert pleaded guilty to violating banking law in trying to pay $3.5 million to keep one victim quiet.