The beat-down goes on for Marion Jones

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — Marion Jones was sentenced Friday to six months in prison for lying about using steroids and a check-fraud scam, despite her plea that she not be separated from her two young children “even for a short period of time.”

“I ask you to be as merciful as a human being can be,” said Jones, who cried on her husband’s shoulder after she was sentenced.

U.S. District Judge Kenneth Karas gave her the maximum under her plea deal “because of the need for general deterrence and the need to promote respect for the law.”

As she beseeched the judge for a lighter sentence, the disgraced former Olympic champion talked at length about her children, including the infant son she’s still nursing.

“My passion in life has always been my family,” Jones said. “I know the day is quickly approaching when my boys ask me about these current events. I intend to be honest and forthright … and guide them into not making the same mistakes.”

The sentence completes a stunning fall for the woman who was once the most celebrated female athlete in the world. She won three gold and two bronze medals at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

from sources by way of the Associated Press