For the first time since her release from prison in December, Real Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice is speaking in depth about her time spent at the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Conn., which she describes as “living in hell.”
“I mean there was mold in the bathrooms. There was not running water constantly. The showers were freezing cold … I mean, the living conditions were really horrible,” the 43-year-old tells GMA‘s Amy Robach. “There were some nights that we didn’t even have heat.”
Teresa and husband Joe during a court appearance in March 2014.
The TV personality served 11-and-a-half months in jail after pleading guilty to charges including conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bankruptcy fraud — though she insists she didn’t realize she was breaking the law.
“There was no intent to commit a crime. I didn’t know I was committing a crime …” Teresa shares. “I got sentenced. I got served time. I did what I had to do and now I’m moving past it.”
The mother-of-four, who worked in the facility’s kitchen for 12 cents an hour, reveals she nicknamed her shared living space “the boom-boom room” because so many inmates had sex there.
“When I first got there I bought headphones the next day … So thank God for commissary,” she says. “But I just went underneath the blanket. And we had a fan in our room. Like, this huge fan. And they would put that on every single night, so you can’t hear anything.”
Despite the fact that her husband Joe begins a 41-month sentence in March, Teresa claims the family is “in good shape.”
“[We’re not in] foreclosure any longer, thank you, God,” she reveals. “And our restitution’s paid off.”
Fans can read more about Teresa’s prison term in her new memoir, Turning the Tables: From Housewife to Inmate and Back Again.