Back in February of 2019, it was announced that the formerly illustrious New York City dealer and influential cultural figure Mary Boone had been sentenced to serve 30 months in prison and complete 180 hours of community service for falsifying tax documents in 2009, 2010 and 2011. This was an embarrassing hit for Boone, especially because the evidence showed that she’d repeatedly mischaracterized personal expenses as business expenses in order to do things like remodel her apartment and shop at Hermès. Now, however, it appears that Boone’s luck may be changing: according to Artnet, Boone was recently released from Danbury, Connecticut’s Federal Correctional Facility after serving only 13 months of her 30-month sentence.
Boone, who is apparently currently residing in a halfway house in Brooklyn before a scheduled move to confinement in her own home, was most likely released early because the prison in which she was serving her sentence quickly became a hotbed for COVID-19. In March, Attorney General William Barr ruled that those imprisoned in FCI Danbury who have existing health conditions or who’re elderly could qualify for home confinement, and given that Boone is 68 years old and therefore at high risk of having a fatal reaction to the novel coronavirus, it makes sense that she would be removed from the prison for her own safety.
As welcome as this move surely is for Boone, it’s important to note that the vast majority of incarcerated people in America have not been afforded the privilege of serving their sentences from home because of the threat of COVID-19. Quite the opposite: prisoners have been forced to attempt to keep themselves safe in cramped conditions that are particularly dangerous due to the virus, which becomes a far higher threat in poorly-ventilated areas like, say, Rikers Island.
Boone’s official release date from prison is still set for July 1 of 2021, so between now and then she’ll likely split her time between the Brooklyn halfway house facility and her private residence. Boone may have once had New York City in the palm of her hand, but now, no one knows what the city will look or feel like this time next year.