Celebrities With Partners Who Served Jail Time

Having a partner in jail is never an easy ordeal. It doesn't only disrupt the life of the person going to prison, but that of everyone around them. For partners, it means watching the person you love behind bars and losing the intimacy and the routine of a day-to-day life with them. Everything turns upside down.

Sophie Brown wrote an article, "What's It Like When The Person You Love Is In Prison," and interviewed different women whose partners were incarcerated. Most of them talked about the struggle to keep up with their daily lives after losing a key component. Whether it was because their household changed and the income was reduced, or because their children weren't able to see their parents. Nina, one of the interviewees, said it also affected the couple's dynamic. "We're really struggling to keep the spark in our relationship. Telephone calls and letters are monitored, so we never have phone sex or anything like that. Even kissing in visits is hard for us — some couples need to be hosed down! We're both very wary of Big Brother watching."

Although it may seem like this only happens to a select group of people, celebrities aren't that different. Many couples have had to deal with the cruel reality of continuing a relationship with their partner served jail time. Here are a few of the A-list couples who had to face the struggles of a relationship and prison.

Rhea Durham helped Mark Wahlberg turn things around

Mark Wahlberg's criminal past has always been out in the open, and he has discussed it several times during different interviews. Wahlberg had to serve his sentence for assaulting a Vietnamese shopkeeper while high on drugs and using racial slurs. "I was always in trouble," he told The Guardian "I took it upon myself to own up to my mistakes and go against the grain and not be a part of the gang any more."

Even though his past is full of violence and crime, Wahlberg turned his life around, and a lot of it he owes to his wife Rhea Durham. The couple started dating in 2001 but didn't tie the knot until 2009. Nowadays, he is a family man and continues to work on his career.

In 2018, he told The Sun, "Three of my brothers had done time and my sister went to prison so many times I lost count. Finally I was there, locked up with the kind of guys I'd always wanted to be like . . . and I realized it wasn't what I wanted at all." It was different when he began dating Durham and she made him realize he wasn't ready for a family until she came along. "I owe a lot to my wife. She has helped me become the man that I am and created a beautiful life for me and our children."

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Felicity Huffman and William H. Macy's college admissions scandal

Felicity Huffman and William H. Macy have been married since 1997. In 2019, they had to face one of the biggest and most public struggles of their marriage. Huffman was charged with committing fraud to get their daughter into an Ivy League university. She was accused of paying a bribe to make sure her older daughter was able to take the SAT overviewed by someone who could correct her if she made any mistakes.

Many wonder why only Huffman was charged. Defense attorney Louis Shapiro explained to the Los Angeles Times, "Based on the evidence in the complaint, his wife played a far more significant role. Felicity Huffman is the more active member of the couple and is in more of the communication clearly with Rick Singer."

Huffman was sentenced to two weeks in prison but ended up serving 11 days. One the day of her sentencing, she gave a statement apologizing for her behavior — particularly to her daughter and husband. "I have learned a lot over the last six months about my flaws as a person. My goal now is to serve the sentence that the court has given me. I look forward to doing my community service hours and making a positive impact on my community. I also plan to continue making contributions wherever I can well after those service hours are completed" (via CNN).

Tim Allen and Jane Hajduk 'agree to disagree'

In 1978, Tim Allen was arrested for carrying 1.4 pounds of cocaine at the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport. He pleaded guilty and collaborated with the authorities giving the names of big time dealers. He ended up going to prison for two years and four months in Minnesota.

After his time in prison, Allen realized he needed to turn his life around. As he explained on the "WTF with Marc Maron" podcast, "I learned literally how to live day by day. And I learned how to shut up. You definitely want to learn how to shut up." Still, it seemed like he didn't fully get a hold of his life until he was in his second marriage with Jane Hajduk.

For Allen, this marriage and second chance at parenthood was the opportunity to make up for how absent he was during his first marriage. "It's not my thing to sit on the ground and play tea party, but I'll do it because it's a moment that will stick with me forever," he told Parade. Those who know Allen, can tell there was a change in his lifestyle and his behavior when he met Hajduk. Nancy Travis told Country Living, "They are a couple that have been married for a long time, and they raised three wonderful daughters and have a mutual respect, but don't necessarily always agree, and agree to disagree."

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Hailey Bieber now helps Justin Bieber feel secure

Before Justin Bieber married Hailey Bieber, he felt lost and alone. It was so bad that in 2014, he was arrested in Florida for drag racing under the influence. He didn't end up serving jail time, and his attorney declared, "Mr. Bieber has been released on bond and we agreed that the standard bail would apply in this case." The bail was $2,500, as reported by CBS News.

When looking back at this time of his life, Bieber posted on Instagram, "7 years ago today I was arrested, not my finest hour. Not proud of where I was at in my life. I was hurting, unhappy, confused, angry, mislead, misunderstood and angry at god." He owes his recovery and his stability to having gotten closer to God and allowing himself to follow the path that was designed for him.

However, a lot of his peace and stability came from his relationship to Hailey. Since marrying her, the singer seems to have found peace both in his personal and professional life, allowing him to be the best version of himself. He told Vogue, "Hailey's very logical and structured, which I need. I've always wanted security — with my dad being gone sometimes when I was a kid, with being on the road. With the lifestyle I live, everything is so uncertain. I need one thing that's certain. And that is my baby boo."

Whitney Houston waited for Bobby Brown to be released

In 2000, cameras waited outside prison for Bobby Brown's release, but they weren't the only ones. Video footage of that day shows Whitney Houston waiting by a white limousine for her husband. As soon as the two were reunited, Houston jumped into his arms and celebrated he was back home. MTV reported upon his release, Brown said, "I just want to be with my family and my friends. I'm going home to spend the summer with my kids and work on my life." Brown had originally been charged for parole violation after receiving a DUI in Florida. He was originally sentenced to serve 75 days, but was released 11 days earlier.

Houston and Brown were married from 1992 to 2007, meaning they were together when he was first arrested, while he served his time in jail, and while he readjust to his life. However, the marriage didn't last and a lot of it had to do with the many different issues they struggled with. Houston opened up on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" about Brown violating probation by slapping her. "Holy Matrimony was a very serious thing for me because that's how I was raised ... I was gonna keep my vow. I never cheated. I never did none of that stuff. The only thing I did cheat with was when I did the drugs."

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Shanell said Lil Wayne's prison time made them closer

In 2007, Lil Wayne was arrested for possession of drugs and weapons. According to ABC News, he served eight months of jail time, but not long after his release, he was arrested under the same charges in Arizona and ended up facing 36 months of probation. Over a decade later, he was arrested for carrying guns as a convicted felon.

During his time in jail, Lil Wayne was dating Shanell Lynn Woodgett, one of the Young Money members. When talking to The Boombox, Shanell said the experience was bringing everyone together because they had to help each other out professionally and personally, so the band stuck together. "When I go visit, I'm really trying to make sure that he's alright. We talk about all kinds of things other than music, and we'll talk about music at the end. But he calls everybody all the time ... he hasn't been able to hear our music, but he gives us advice and we give him advice. But he has never allowed us to see him in any kind of downward."

Rolling Stone reported that during his time in jail, Lil Wayne released four videos to remind his fans that he wasn't going anywhere and he would still be making music.

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Ja Rule and Aisha Atkins faced prison rumors

In 2022, Ja Rule and Aisha Atkins celebrated their 21st wedding anniversary. Even though the parents of three seem to be happy together, there was a period of time when they had to deal with rumors of Ja Rule having a lover after being in prison.

Ja Rule first received a sentence of 28 months for unpaid taxes, then two years for carrying a semi-automatic handgun. After his time in prison, his wife appeared in a documentary titled "Married Life After Prison." During her appearance, she said, "He wrote all them love songs and still don't know how to treat a b**ch ... We spent ten-plus years building our marriage but it only took him two to decide he'd rather suck a d**k then be with his wife." (via Independent) Ja Rule was quick to dismiss this by saying it was only rumors people created online.

After said prison affair allegations, there were rumors that the couple was splitting. However, they were quick to dismiss them by posting a photo on Instagram together: "Sorry to disappoint u guys who wanted so bad for the rumors to be true Merry Xmas haters from Mickey and [Mallory]."

Wesley Snipes's faith carried him through his incarceration and to Nikki Park

In 2008, Wesley Snipes was sentenced to three years in prison for tax evasion. The Daily Mail reported several celebrities stood up for him, writing letters to the US District Court Judge. Among them was Denzel Washington, who wrote, "Wesley is like a mighty oak tree. Many who know him have witnessed the fruit of his labors. I have sat in his shade and even been protected by his presence."

However, he was arrested because during the investigation, he tried to enter South Africa using a fake passport. During his sentencing, all he did was shrug, and his attorney later said, "Mr. Snipes was sentenced because he's Mr. Snipes." Snipes was (and still is) married to Nikki Park, who wrote a lengthy letter to family and friends about her husband and his incarceration. In the letter, she described her husband as a strong man of integrity and dignity who wasn't a criminal for tax evasion but a man and artist who needed a more honest accountant.

After his release, Snipes told Loaded magazine that he was able to overcome his time inside thanks to faith and inspiration. "First you have your faith in the most high and your spiritual foundation — that's the key to anything no matter what the situation is. And then the knowledge that greater men than me have been through worse situations is always an inspiration. Your family's an inspiration." (via AZcentral)

Snoop Dogg and Shante Broadus have both served time

Usually, it is one partner going in and the other waiting outside for them, dealing with the struggles of having an incarcerated spouse. However, in the case of Snoop Dogg and Shante Broadus, they have both been arrested. Through all the struggles and runnings with the law, the couple has been together, even marrying in 1997.

In 1993, Snoop Dogg faced murder charges after his bodyguard killed a member of a rival gang. But that wasn't the first nor the last time he would be arrested. The rapper also had to face charges for possession of illegal drugs and assault. "No matter how high Snoop climbed, the gravity of the streets would always pull him back down, and that was cool. Snoop didn't mind. It was where he came from. Ever since he was a youth, he rode with the Rollin 20 crips. The streets were his world. He was in no hurry to leave them behind, despite his success," said Jake Brennan on iHeart's "Disgraceland" podcast.

But he wasn't the only half of the couple having issues with the law. In 2008, Los Angeles Times reported Broadus was arrested for driving under the influence. She was then sent to Fullerton City Jail where she was ordered to show up in court — she did not have to serve jail time.

Papoose and Remy Ma had an incarcerated wedding

Remy Ma knew she had a loyal partner when rapper Papoose decided to marry her while she was incarcerated. In 2008, she was sentenced to eight years (she served six and a half years) in prison for assault, attempted coercion, and possession of weapons. After the sentencing, her lawyer said, per MTV, "Remy Ma spoke to the court and movingly spoke to the victim, who was in court, to share with her how sorrowful she was about what happened to her. It was an extremely moving moment, where she expressed how badly she felt about the tragedy of being shot and that she was very, very sorry it happened to Makeda."

Through her six and a half years in jail, Papoose visited her regularly, visiting her every day during her first year. Usually, when someone is charged with a crime, people around them will cut all communication, but for Remy Ma, her boyfriend (and now husband) was the one to get her through it all. "With the women, it would be literally tumbleweeds blowing through the visiting door. The boyfriends, they leave. The husbands, they leave," she told Hollywood Life. "[Papoose] definitely was a major part."

Robert Downey Jr. says becoming more like Susan Downey made him a better person

Everyone who knows Iron Man knows of Robert Downey Jr.'s troublesome past. In 2015, he received a pardon for nearly two decades prior having been charged with using controlled substances, driving under the influence, and carrying a weapon while having a prior conviction. The Governor of California who granted the pardon released a statement that said, "Pardons are not granted unless they are earned ... He has lived an honest and upright life, exhibited good moral character and conducted himself as a law-abiding citizen" (via CNN).

Many attribute Downey Jr.'s recovery to his relationship with Susan Downey. He says that he owes who he is now as a person to his wife. In an interview with Harper's Bazaar, the actor claimed, "I guess the only way to explain it is that I've become more like her. I'm still trying to figure out what happened. Whatever I was hungry for when I met Susan, I couldn't have known how much more satisfying what I got would be."

When talking about her husband, Susan never describes the negativity of his past or judges him for who he used to be when they met. On the contrary, she celebrates his good qualities and who he has become: "He's this incredible amalgam of contradictory traits that is never boring. He's completely eccentric but grounded. He's someone who has lived so much life yet has almost a Peter Pan kind of never-grow-up quality."

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Denise Richards married Charlie Sheen and his troublesome past

Denise Richards married Charlie Sheen in 2002, and with that she married into a long list of troublesome behavior, arrests, and convictions. Before their marriage, in 1997, it was reported that Sheen faced a lawsuit from ex-girlfriend Brittany Ashland that resulted in two years probation, a fine, counseling, and a one-year suspended prison term. However, he violated his parole and was only able to escape jail time by going to rehab.

This behavior of utilizing rehab as a way to escape prison has been done by Sheen on many occasions. In 2010, a judge sentenced him to 30 days in jail, but they counted his time spent at Promises of Malibu (a rehab center) that year towards his sentence. In a statement, Sheen said, "I look forward to complying with the court's decision, getting on with my life and putting this behind me." However, it was mostly his wife at the time, Brooke Mueller, who couldn't wait to move on with her life, after having been threatened with a knife by her hubby (via CNN).

The case between Sheen and Mueller went on for several years until she was granted a restraining order in 2011. During these years, TMZ announced Sheen had given full custody of his daughters to Richards. The duo themselves divorced in 2006.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.