SHAKOPEE, Minn. (WCCO) — She hasn’t served her full sentence yet in a deadly hit-and-run crash, but Amy Senser was released from prison on Thursday.

It also doesn’t mean she’s free and going home. The wife of former Vikings player Joe Senser will be moved to either a jail or halfway house to begin a work release program. She has been behind bars at the Shakopee Women’s Prison since she was sentenced in 2012.

The Minnesota Department of Corrections confirmed that she was released early Thursday morning and has been moved to the work release program.

Amy Senser is now moving onto a new stage in her punishment, but not freedom. As part of that work release program, she’ll go to work during the day and to halfway house at night until Oct. 20.

After that, she’ll be on supervised released until December of 2015, which marks the end of her 41-month sentence. Amy Senser was convicted in the hit-and-run death of 38-year-old Anousone Phanthavong. Back in 2011, he was a chef refilling his gas tank after work on an Interstate 94 ramp in Minneapolis when he was hit and killed.

We are still waiting to find out the specifics of where Amy Senser will go after she’s released from the Shakopee Women’s Prison on Thursday. The majority of offenders find employment within two weeks of their placement on work release.

Many people wrote in to us or told us on the streets they’re concerned Amy Senser is not serving her full sentence behind bars. So How does the system determine who can be on these work release programs?

About 200 offenders are on work release at any given time, according to the Department of Corrections. Authorities said that saves money for people determined low risk and how you behave in prison.


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