Amy Senser exits prison for work release program

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Quoting the Minnesota Department of Corrections, KSTP reports that Amy Senser left a state prison Thursday morning after serving one year and eight months in a 41-month sentence. She was sentenced to prison in connection with a conviction in a fatal hit-and-run. FOX 9 reported that she left through a loading dock sometime between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m.

A plan had been in place to transfer the 47-year-old wife of former Minnesota Vikings player Joe Senser from the Shakopee women's prison to a work release facility. Senser has been in custody since July of 2012. The Associated Press quoted Corrections Department spokesman John Schadl, who said Amy Senser was moved to an unspecified residential correctional facility in the community.

Terry Byrne, Work Release director for the Minnesota Corrections Department, explained to FOX 9 that being on work release means Senser's every move will be tracked. She will be required to seek and find work. Once she starts a job, she will go to work and then return to the halfway house. There is no time allotted with family for dinner or outside activities.

"Offenders often have to start at an entry-level job," Byrne told the station, saying that inmates on work release are closely watched, including getting routine alcohol checks.

Senser was convicted of criminal vehicular homicide in the death of chef Anousone Phanthavong, 38, of Roseville in August of 2011. He was struck as he refilled his gas tank on an Interstate 94 highway exit ramp. The Minnesota Court of Appeals upheld her conviction in the case.

Senser will be eligible to leave work release in October, when she is expected to be on supervised release until December of 2015. The Department of Corrections now has updated mugshots on its site.

KMSP-TV

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Prison or Probation? Amy Senser to learn punishment Monday

Amy Senser will be sentenced Monday morning in a hit-and-run accident that killed a Roseville man last August on a freeway exit ramp in Minneapolis. In May, a jury convicted the wife of former Minnesota Viking Joe Senser of two felony counts of criminal vehicular homicide. Prosecutors want the judge to send Senser to prison for nearly five years. Her defense attorney has asked for probation.

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