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Stewart to finish sentence, shed ankle bracelet



Published: Sat, August 27, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Her company is looking forward to having the domestic diva back to work full time.

KATONAH, N.Y. (AP) -- Unless she gets into trouble with her probation officer again, Martha Stewart will gain her freedom this week from her "hideous" home confinement sentence and that bothersome, unstylish electronic anklet.

After five months in prison for lying about a stock sale and five months of court-ordered restrictions at her Westchester County estate -- plus three weeks tacked on for misbehaving -- the queen of domestic marketing should be able to move around like any other felon who's done her time.

If she's still under constant surveillance after Wednesday's release, it'll be the paparazzi, not the feds.

Stewart will still be on probation, but will no longer be limited to 48 hours out of the house per week.

Her company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, is looking forward to having her back, "working without restriction," said a company spokeswoman, Elizabeth Estroff.

Stewart had expected to shed the anklet Aug. 10, but on Aug. 3, her 64th birthday, her lawyer announced that she had agreed to an extension.

Where she erred

The violation that got her the extra time was never made public, although there were reports that she popped into a yoga class and was spotted driving around her 153-acre estate, which could be violations if they were not related to her work.

Chris Stanton, chief federal probation officer in New York, would not say if other violations had surfaced.

The continuing probation means that until March 2007, Stewart is not allowed to get drunk, own a gun or leave the federal court district (for her other homes in Connecticut, Maine and the Hamptons, for example) without permission.

She must meet with her probation officer whenever requested and submit monthly reports on her activities. She can't associate with other felons, unless she wants to become an informer.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.




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