NEW YORK -- Martha Stewart will do her time farther from home than she had hoped, at a remote West Virginia prison where inmates sleep in bunk beds and rise at 6 a.m. to do menial labor for pennies an hour.
Stewart said yesterday that she has been assigned to the minimum-security women's prison at Alderson.
Stewart, convicted in March of lying about a stock sale, had asked to serve her five-month prison term in Danbury, Conn., close to her 90-year-old mother and her own home in nearby Westport.
But a source familiar with the government's decision, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that Alderson was selected because it was more remote and less accessible to the media than Danbury or Stewart's second choice of Coleman, Fla.
Stewart, 63, must report to Alderson by Oct. 8. In a statement, she said she had hoped to be imprisoned closer to her family but was pleased that the government had assigned her ''so quickly" to ''the first federal prison camp for women in the United States."
Stewart's new prison home is tucked into a town of about 1,000 residents that relies on inmates to clean up the river banks, mow grass, and pick up trash. The inmate-staffed fire department assists the town's volunteer department when needed.
Inmates at Alderson typically rise about 6 a.m. and work most of the day at jobs such as ground maintenance, sanitation, and food service, said Dan Dunne, a federal prisons spokesman.
They sleep in bunk beds in nine large rooms that house between 26 and 90 inmates each. There are no individual cells. Lights out is about 8:45 p.m. on weekdays, later on weekends, Dunne said.