Of all the schools to risk jail time for. This is like deciding to pull off one grand heist, the crime of a lifetime, aimed at setting your family up forever and choosing a Burger King as your target.
If you’re going to gamble years of your freedom, go big. Rob a bank. Bribe Harvard, Yale, Princeton.
Well, not Princeton. That’s for cucks.
There’s an okay school in Palo Alto, from what I hear, that’s on the same coast as the Giannullis’ home. Allegedly fat envelopes were being handed out there too. Imagine having a potential “in” for your kids at Stanford and deciding that your heart’s set on [buuuuuuurp] USC instead.
Anyway, lest there was any doubt, this scandal isn’t about education, it’s about prestige. Apparently Lori Loughlin got it into her head that the most prestigious option for her very wealthy children in their young adulthood would be to attend a school primarily known for being good at football. And not even that so much anymore.
“Lori is used to getting what she wants,” says the family source. “This is why she got in trouble in the first place. She got fixated on getting her girls into USC.”…
“For her, there was no other way,” says the family source. “They needed to be at USC. It was very important for her to be able to say that her girls were at USC.”
For Loughlin, 54, “it was absolutely a status thing” for her daughters to attend the elite Los Angeles university, where the admission rate was 13 percent in March 2018, the family source says. “And the fact that she wanted the girls to have things that she never had growing up.”
Making sure the girls had things that she never had growing up was already covered, one would think, by the fact that they live in a $35 million home. But this makes sense in geographic context: It’s probably the case among Loughlin’s SoCal social circle that the school that all of the local smart, or smart-ish, or, uh, basically functional kids attend is USC. If her motive here was nothing more or less than keeping up with the Joneses then it had to be USC for the Giannulli girls. Her friends were all driving Mercedes, so to speak, so she had to drive a Mercedes too. Which would explain why her daughter’s public and, presumably, private warnings that she had no interest in college were no deterrent to mom and dad trying to get her in. They didn’t care if Olivia learned anything. They just wanted to be able to say that she goes there.
Imagine existing in a world of such privilege that your teenaged daughter is making big money touting make-up every day to her audience of millions of YouTube followers and concluding that that’s not impressive enough for dinner-party conversation. Although I suppose that makes sense in context too. All of these people sh*t money. Naturally they’ll turn to other yardsticks with which to measure each other.
Speaking of Olivia, she’s reportedly holding up okay lately, having committed herself to a period of seclusion and earnest scholarship in order to show the world that it has the wrong impression of her. No, no, just kidding — she’s drinking and partying with friends. But maybe … not for long?
Refinery29 spoke with William Moran, an attorney who specialises in crisis management at the Otterbourg firm. He explained that the additional charges brought against Olivia Jade’s parents on Tuesday are part of a familiar pattern for prosecutors. Loughlin and Giannulli were given an opportunity to plead guilty, as Huffman and 13 other defendants did, but chose not to. Prosecutors will now begin to seek further evidence for a trial – and this is where Olivia Jade could find herself in trouble.
“The more time that passes, however, the more likely it is that the prosecutor will bring pressure by seeking to interview the children as part of the evidence,” says Moran. “If Olivia Jade knew and participated, she could face criminal liability. As long as charges against the parents are pending, the children are still vulnerable.”
Is that the feds’ next pressure tactic to get Loughlin to plea — indicting Olivia Jade? They must be hesitant to do that knowing there’ll be more public sympathy for the children of the scam than for the parents. She’s young, seemingly not so bright, and apparently went along with mom’s plot only reluctantly, preferring not to attend college at all. Not an ideal villain. Plus, if they were going to use the prospect of jail time for Olivia against Loughlin and her husband, presumably they would have done it already when they added the new money laundering charges to their indictment.
But maybe they have no choice. She’s the “breakout star” of this story, after all. It wouldn’t feel right if she didn’t end up at the center of some courtroom drama.
By the way, Loughlin told a magazine last year that she and her family had been asked to do a reality show — more than once — but turned it down on grounds that, and I quote, “We’re not that exciting.” This entire freak show could have been on tape, all the way back to Olivia and her sister pretend-excitedly going through the college application process for the benefit of the cameras. Instead we’re bereft. Loughlin should do hard time for that alone.