Former Morning Anchor Sentenced To Stunning Verdict In Scandal
San Francisco (AP) The college admissions scandal has rocked the nation, exposing multiple parents and academic institutions in a web of bribery, over-parenting, and high expectations for dimwitted children. Multiple charges have been brought against college officials in more than one institute of higher learning. The same has applied to parents who have resorted to bribery to get their children into an elite school as opposed to the state college they might be more suited to. And those children have been dropping out, humiliated by the insinuation that their parents think they were never that bright to begin with.
And now it’s been driven home in a big way locally speaking. Rebecca Katsopolis (Aunt Becky to her nieces) was until recently the co-anchor for Wake Up, San Francisco with her brother-in-law Danny Tanner. Married to second tier musician Jesse Katsopolis, now facing charges of his own, Katsopolis was a well liked anchor who bore an uncanny resemblance to Lori Loughlin, an actress also charged in the scandal. She was charged with bribery and fraud after paying a USC official three million dollars to have her sons Nicholas and Alex admitted three years ago as rugby players on a scholarship- despite never playing a game or even attending a practice or having the slightest interest in the sport.
USC assistant rugby coach Tony Tasker, having had recently been fired after his own arrest in the matter, pleaded guilty in exchange for giving up information on people who had paid him to smooth the way for their children. Among those caught up in the matter was Katsopolis. “It was all on paper,” Tasker said in a statement of facts during his own sentencing. “It didn’t matter that the boys weren’t actually rugby players or that they had no talent or that they were, frankly, brain addled idiots. I just had to say they were. And talk the professors into taking it easy on their grades.” The Katsopolis boys have abruptly dropped out of USC, humiliated by the experience of finding out that their parents think they’re stupid, and reportedly have changed their names.
Where Katsopolis got the three million dollars is another matter. While her salary as a morning anchor was more than enough to leave her comfortable, three million dollars is not the sort of loose change one expects to find in the couch of someone of that vocation. Police investigations have cast light on her husband. Jesse Katsopolis never rose up in the world of music as much as he would have liked, and it is alleged that at some point in the last fifteen years, he started a side business that proved to be quite profitable.
“He’s a drug dealer,” a Narcotics detective told this reporter with the proviso of not mentioning their name. “We’ve built up a substantial case and it’s ready to go for prosecution. And if things go as we expect, it means we’ll have cleared one Elvis-haired freak off the streets and done some good for the world. So much the better.” Jesse Katsopolis is presently in pre-trial custody awaiting his own trial for drug dealing and trafficking, extortion, human trafficking, weapons charges, fraud, and jaywalking.
Rebecca Katsopolis seemed resigned to her fate, choosing to plead guilty to the charges and throw herself on the mercy of the court. In which case she ended up with the wrong judge. For it is the reputation of Judge Constance Sorrow, known as The Hangwoman, to go hard on the convicted. A sentence of forty years was handed down on Katsopolis yesterday. She was taken out of court, with an expression of shock and horror on her face. Nieces DJ and Stephanie Tanner, representing the family in court, were in tears. “Aunt Becky! No!” they called out as their aunt was removed from court.
“That’s enough of those histrionics,” Judge Sorrow admonished the two sisters with a cold tone and an even colder glare, silencing both of them. “The only person in my courtroom who gets to throw a tantrum is me! If you had to put up with a name like this, you’d understand that.”
Danny Tanner has been absent this week from his duties at Wake Up, San Francisco. He’s kept largely a low profile since the charges were filed, and hasn’t said a word about it publicly on air. The issue of his co-anchor and sister-in-law being carted off to prison will have to be addressed at some point. The station has stopped featuring Katsopolis’ face on the program’s introductory video. As for the convicted felon herself? She’s been remanded to custody at the Central California Women’s Facility, where she’s already become the cellmate and personal property of Drucilla Carter, the infamous armed robber doing fifty years for a crime spree across the Pacific coast in the late Nineties.
An unnamed guard at the institution told this reporter, “We had a bet running on how long it would take for Katsopolis to break down. I won the pool at five minutes. Yay me!”