Jackson Jr.'s parents speak about his future after prison

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Jesse Jackson Jr. left a halfway house in Baltimore, Maryland, and began home confinement in Washington Monday morning.

PHOTOS: Jesse Jackson Jr. released from Baltimore halfway house


Technically, Jackson Jr. is still in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, so his family is being careful about what they say about the next phase of his sentence.

Jackson's mother, father and siblings missed the former congressman's homecoming as they remained in Chicago for the 44th annual Rainbow PUSH Convention, which focused on technology this year.

"Teach our children apps and codes and computer science," said Rev. Jesse Jackson.

But with Jackson returning to his home in Washington, D.C. to serve the remainder of his term on house arrest, it was difficult for his father to stay on message.

"He honored his protocols and his release is on schedule and so he's back with his family and that's good news," Rev. Jackson said.

Jackson Jr., 50, and his wife Sandi pleaded guilty in February 2013. He was convicted for misusing his campaign fund and served the last 20 months in either federal prisons or a halfway house in Baltimore. His wife Sandi, who was convicted on tax-related charges, will begin serving her one-year sentence on October 30.

"In the struggle to be free once again, this is the first step," said Jacqueline Jackson, Jackson's mother.

ABC7 producer Dan Lopez spoke one-on-one exclusively to the former congressman's mother, who says she now identifies with millions of other parents whose convicted sons and daughters are trying reenter society.

"We must embrace our children, not be led to believe that they are less than they are," Jacqueline Jackson said.

And should her son return to politics, she said, "The people will decide and we'll see."

By law, Jackson Jr. could run again for federal office. But he told ABC7 he wants write a book and teach when his home confinement ends in September.

Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.