In a totally shocking turn of events, a marriage that began in a prison cell has come to an end.
Shoe designer Steve Madden and his wife, Wendy Ballew, are getting a divorce nearly 10 years after he popped the question while behind bars.
Steve and Wendy in 2006.
The couple confirmed their intentions to file for divorce tomorrow, May 15, in a joint statement.
Steve and Wendy were childhood friends, and eventually she became his first “real” employee.
While serving as the shoe mogul’s director of operations, they fell in love during her regular visits to him in jail as he served a 31-month prison sentence for stock manipulation and securities fraud.
He was charged for his involvement with the scandalous “pump and dump” brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont, which was notoriously depicted in the Oscar-nominated flick The Wolf of Wall Street.
Jake Hoffman as Steve in the critically acclaimed movie.
The designer — who was portrayed by actor Jake Hoffman in the Martin Scorsese flick — is childhood friends with Danny Porush, one of the controversial firm’s co-founders.
Porush served 39 months behind bars — only eight more than Steve. Jordan Belfort, the self-proclaimed “Wolf of Wall Street” and the other co-founder of the company, was only locked up for 22 months for his part.
Steve married Wendy in 2006, shortly after his release from prison. They have three children together — seven-year-old twins Jack and Stevie and two-year-old Goldie.
The statement described their split as “amicable,” adding, “Steve and Wendy are committed to their continued respect for one another and their mutual desire to protect their young children.”
Page Six broke news of their divorce.
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