Todd and Julie Chrisley have released a previously recorded podcast episode two days after they were sentenced to a combined 19 years in federal prison following their guilty conviction in their tax fraud case.
Leaning on her faith Julie explained that she is looking toward God and religious sermons to help guide her through this time. “I know in my heart that I am a Christian, I know I believe that God can work miracles … but I still have this fear,” she continued.
Todd and Julie went on to explain that despite their legal circumstance they are taking the lessons that God is giving them by “stripping them down” and “reminding them where they came from.”
Todd then went on to discuss how fame has hurt him and his family over the years. “Here we were living a very nice life. But it wasn’t a life that I wanted to continue once we got into it. I didn’t like that people were knocking on our doors at night and chasing us down the interstate to try to get our pictures ’cause they see us in the car,” Todd said. “You know the issues that I have with that and the anxiety I have over that.”
The couple went on to explain how they are closer and more connected than ever, despite the looming sentencing. “When people go through traumatic events, a lot of times they don’t make it. A lot of times the relationship falls apart because everything is stressful, there’s way added pressures and people don’t make it — I’m grateful that our relationship has grown instead of falling apart,” Julie said.
Throughout the podcast episode, Todd and Julie sound resilient in the face of their hardships. They talk about the “fires” and “low points” in life that they are experiencing but are being strong for their children. “Just because we don’t see justice, doesn’t mean that God doesn’t see it and that God’s not going to show it in his time,” Todd said.
The “Chrisley Knows Best” stars were sentenced Monday — Todd for 12 years and Julie for seven, respectively — nearly six months after they were found guilty of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States and tax fraud. The comments made during the recent episode of their podcast are the first time the couple has made known their exact feelings about the sentencing.
The Chrisley family on Tuesday issued a statement through their family attorney, Alex Little of Burr & Forman LLP, telling ET that Monday’s sentencing was a “difficult day” for all of them.
“But Todd and Julie are people of faith, and that faith gives them strength as they appeal their convictions,” the statement continued. “Their trial was marred by serious and repeated errors, including the government lying to jurors about what taxes the couple paid. Based on these issues, we are optimistic about the road ahead.”
Judge Rachel Juarez, star of the first-ever three-judge panel CBS show “Hot Bench”, told ET that the prison sentences for the embattled couple fall along the lines of what most legal experts expected. Juarez, who was not involved in the Chrisleys’ federal case and is not connected to the reality TV stars, said while the prison sentences are significant, they don’t fall anywhere near the range prosecutors recommended — 17 1/2 to 22 years for Todd and 10 to 12 1/2 years for Julie.
That the Chrisleys didn’t show any remorse also played a part in the sentencing, according to Juarez.
“I think unwillingness to show responsibility absolutely played into the sentence,” Juarez said. “Not only did these two individuals — according to the judge and according to the prosecutors — fail to accept responsibility, but they blamed others. And there was significant evidence — that the prosecutors pointed to — that they not only blamed others, but they had third parties testify on their behalf falsely to claim responsibility for what the Chrisleys actually did. And those types of actions, when it comes to sentencing, really don’t help.”
The federal judge in the case has recommended that Julie serve her sentence at Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) Tallahassee, the same 755-inmate facility where disgraced former socialite Ghislaine Maxwell is serving out her prison sentence. Todd’s slated to serve out his sentence at FCI Pensacola, a minimum-security prison once described as a “laid-back” facility and basically like “camp.”
The fallout from the convictions — and subsequent prison sentences — has affected the family in various ways. In the wake of those sentences, ET has learned it is unlikely the Chrisleys’ shows — including “Chrisley Knows Best”, as well as two other reality programs connected to the Chrisley family — will continue.
A source close to “Chrisley Knows Best” says that the USA Network has some episodes of season 10 of the show that were shot prior to the trial, and it is expected that they will air next year.
Additionally, Deadline reports that “Growing Up Chrisley” — which focuses on two of Todd and Julie’s children, Chase and Savannah — has also been canceled.
ET has also learned that “Love Limo” — a reality dating series that would have been hosted by Todd — was given the green light just weeks before the trial, but it is unlikely that production will move forward.
And, during a recent episode on her “Unlocked with Savannah Chrisley” podcast, Savannah broke down while revealing that there’s a possibility she could wind up with custody of her younger siblings — Grayson, 16, and Chloe, 10.
“I come home Tuesday and I have custody of a 16-year-old, I have custody of a 10-year-old,” she tearfully says. “And we spend our first Thanksgiving not as a family.”