Former superintendent Rod Thompson scheduled for August prison release

By Amanda McKnight

Former Shakopee Schools superintendent Rod Thompson’s release date from Duluth Federal Prison Camp has been moved up from January 2021 to Aug. 24.

Thompson has been in prison since April 25, 2019, serving a concurrent two-year sentence on federal bribery charges and state embezzlement and swindling charges.

Following a Shakopee Valley News investigation in 2017 and a resulting Shakopee police and FBI investigation, the former superintendent admitted to making more than $30,000 in personal purchases with his school district-issued credit card. He also admitted to soliciting nearly $50,000 in bribes from ICS Consulting, the company that managed the $102 million high school expansion.

Until recently, Thompson’s release date had been scheduled for January 2021. Bureau of Prisons Public Information Officer Justin Long could not provide details related to Thompson’s early release but said an inmate’s time served could be reduced for several reasons, including good conduct.

“Federal sentencing law allows inmates to earn up to 54 days of good conduct time for each year of the term imposed,” Long said. “In addition, qualifying inmates may release up to 12 months early if they complete the Bureau of Prisons’ Residential Drug Abuse Program (RDAP).”

According to Thompson’s attorney Peter Wold, Thompson’s early release is related to his participation in the prison’s drug and alcohol programming.

“Rod worked hard while he was incarcerated, taking advantage of resources and programs available at the Duluth Federal Prison,” Wold said. “Their drug and alcohol program is intense, and I understand that Rod’s dedication to that program and other successes were recognized by the Federal Bureau of Prisons and Minnesota’s Department of Corrections. Rod is anxious to be reunited with his family and to become a productive member of society.”

In January, Shakopee Valley News reported that Thompson requested an early release from prison to a halfway house to complete his drug and alcohol treatment. Scott County District Judge Christian Wilton did not have jurisdiction over the request, according to Valley News, and no motions were filed.

Thompson’s sentence includes two years of supervised release once he is out of federal custody, and he is ordered to pay $74,673 in restitution.

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