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Inside Todd Chrisley’s cushy Florida federal prison


Reality TV star Todd Chrisley reported to federal prison on Tuesday to begin his 12-year sentence — and he couldn’t have asked for a better place to serve.

FPC Pensacola, a minimum-security facility in Pensacola, Florida, has been labeled as one of the “cushiest” in America.

The facility, which opened in 1988, is usually reserved for white-collar crime that includes wire fraud, mail fraud and healthcare fraud.

Prominent defense attorney, Allan Ellis, described the prison as a “pretty laid-back experience,” and idles more along the lines of a “camp.”

Former US Rep. Chris Collins, who served New York’s 27th congressional district from 2013 until his resignation in 2019, was sentenced to 26 months there for insider trading and making false statements to the FBI, which he started on Oct. 13, 2020. (Collins received a pardon from Donald Trump on Dec. 22, 2020, in the last month of his presidency.)

“If I had to do time, that’s one of the places I’d want to be designated to,” Ellis, who annually publishes a “Federal Prison Guidebook,” told Buffalo News of Collins being sentenced there. “These federal prison camps are much better to be at than other federal prisons.”

Former U.S. Rep. Chris Collins arrives at federal court for sentencing Friday, Jan. 17, 2020
Trump ally and former US Rep. Chris Collins was prosecuted for insider trading.
AP/Seth Wenig

Perks of the prison include inmates getting to play racquetball, volleyball and horseshoes. They can even gather in the prison theater for movie night.

“It has every dumbbell and barbell that you could imagine,” Tim Donaghy, a former NBA referee who pleaded guilty to two gambling-related charges, added — also describing the prison as “clean and safe.”

Many of the inmates are either white-collar criminals or drug offenders serving the tail end of long sentences after getting moved to Pensacola for good behavior.

FPC Pensacola also offers educational opportunities, vocational training and communal television rooms for inmates.
FPC Pensacola also offers educational opportunities, vocational training and communal television rooms for inmates.

“I don’t get why you use tax dollars to do that, to pay all those guards, pay all those doctors and nurses and all those people that are there, when you really can just put these people on house arrest,” Donaghy said.

Meanwhile, a 2016 blog post from a former prison inmate detailed his time at the prison as “accommodating.”

Kenneth Flaska, a former attorney, spent more than 5 years at the facility for bank fraud.

He detailed his mornings — which consisted of making coffee, watching CNN, reading, playing a Sudoku puzzle and being able to talk to his wife daily. He was also able to check his email regularly and work out.

Meals consisted of hot dogs, and pasta with red sauce and garlic bread, which Flaska referred to as “not bad by prison standards.”

Flaska added that lights are on at 4:45 to accommodate those who work at the Eglin Air Force Base — a bus picks them up where they will then do landscaping or other chores.

Chrisley, of “Chrisley Knows Best,” was found guilty, along with his wife, Julie, on federal charges of bank fraud and tax evasion, and submitting false documents to banks to take out loans and fund their lavish lifestyle.

Meanwhile, Julie is serving a 7-year prison sentence at FMC Lexington, Kentucky, which is described as an “administrative security federal medical center with an adjacent minimum security satellite camp.”


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