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Arenas to serve sentence in Montgomery County minimum-security facility

By Dan Morse
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, April 3, 2010; 3:49 PM

Washington Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas will spend his month-long community service sentence at a nationally recognized facility in Montgomery County near the White Flint mall.

Arenas will arrive at the Montgomery County Pre-Release Center "in the not-too-distant future," said Arthur Wallenstein, director of the Montgomery Department of Correction and Rehabilitation. He wouldn't specify when, saying the department does not do so as a matter of policy for security reasons.

The minimum-security facility, which can house up to 177 men and women, is designed to allow residents to leave during the day to go to jobs or community service programs. Most residents come directly from county jail and share small rooms that have bunk beds as they transition back into society.

Montgomery also contracts with federal officials to house those ending federal prison sentences or starting federal probation.

"We agreed, and he will be serving his 30 days at our facility," Wallenstein said.

Those on federal probation, such as Arenas, must spend two days at the Montgomery County Detention Center in Rockville for intake, processing and exposure to a jail setting, Wallenstein said.

There are no walls around the facility, which sits in a nondescript section of storefronts and office buildings near Rockville Pike. Wallenstein said the facility has had well-known residents in the past and has filtered them into daily operations without difficulty. He said the facility, founded in the late 1960s, is "the largest and longest-running facility of its kind in Maryland."

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