After pleading guilty to paying $15,000 to fix her daughter’s SAT scores, Felicity Huffman is sharing her side of the story. Huffman and her husband, William H. Macy, wrote a letter to the judge ahead of her sentencing, expressing regret for hurting her daughter — but ultimately still pinning a lot of the blame on fixer William “Rick” Singer.
“In my desperation to be a good mother I talked myself into believing that all I was doing was giving my daughter a fair shot,” Huffman wrote, reports The Los Angeles Times. “I see the irony in that statement now, because what I have done is the opposite of fair.”
Huffman said she didn’t set out to alter her daughter’s test scores — she claimed that after finding out her daughter’s school only had one college admissions counsellor for 300 students, she hired Singer, known as “one of the best experts in L.A.,” to work as a tutor and admissions counsellor in 2016. He came recommended by a friend.
“I was told I would be lucky if I could get him to sign on to help me,” she recalled. After a year of tutoring, though, her daughter’s math scores were still low, and Singer promised he would “make sure she gets the score she needs.”
Through Singer, Huffman paid an SAT proctor to allow Mark Riddell, a Harvard graduate, to correct her daughter’s test answers. Huffman maintains that her daughter had no knowledge of the crime, and, according to Macy, she now “has nightmares from the FBI agents waking her...with guns drawn.”
Macy wrote, “[Huffman] hurt her daughters. It was the one thing she swore never to do, and she did it. It’s a great lump of pain she carries with her every night and day.”
Macy hasn’t been charged with a crime, but according to charging documents, he was aware and supportive of Huffman’s decision. In May, Singer pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, and obstruction of justice; Riddell pleaded guilty to fraud conspiracy and money laundering.
In her letter, Huffman wrote that she panicked and that she just wanted to help her daughter, who dreams of becoming an actress. But, as prosecutors wrote in a letter of their own, “All parents want to help their kids get ahead, yet most manage to steer clear of conspiracy, bribery, and fraud.” Touché.
Huffman will appear in court on 13th September.