Small-town sex scandals are the stuff that tabloid TV shows are made of, and the story of Linda Lusk, the former mayor of Prosser, Wash., who supposedly gave oral sex to her teenage daughter’s ex-boyfriend, made such good TV that ABC’s 20/20 gave it a second airing last week.
In the story, which followed up on a piece that aired two years ago, Lusk said that even though she is no longer on probation and still maintains that she didn’t do what the teenage boy said she did, the local high school won’t let her come to her daughter’s graduation.
But she said that she would attend the ceremony even if it meant getting thrown in jail -- again.
“There is no way that they're going to keep me. I mean, even if I get arrested,” Lusk (pictured) told the ABC News program in an interview that aired last Friday. “I am going to my daughter’s graduation.”
When she was sentenced in 2011 after taking an “Alford plea” on a third-degree child molestation charge, Lusk, 52, spent 90 days in jail on a daytime work release program. The former one-term mayor was allowed to operate her handbag boutique during the day, but forced to spend nights in the county jail.
A condition of her probation was that she not attend events involving children ages 16 or younger. She was banned from her children’s sports events and even parent-teacher conferences at school.
But she told 20/20 that even though her probation is over, the school isn’t backing down. Its policy of barring convicted sex offenders from school grounds allows no exceptions.
Because she was judged unlikely to reoffend, Lusk was not required to register as a sex offender.
An “Alford plea” is when a defendant does not admit guilt, but acknowledges that prosecutors will probably win a conviction.
Lusk’s troubles all came from a relationship she had with a teen named Bubba Frank, then 15. Saying she was suffering depression due to the death of her own son, Lusk admitted texting a photo of herself in her bra to the boy.
Lusk said that during a visit to her house, Frank seemed upset so she gave him a hug. He subsequently dropped his pants, she says.
He said she then gave him oral sex. She said she ran horrified from the room, though her hand may have mistakenly grazed the youth’s exposed gentialia.
SOURCES: ABC News, KOMO News, Democrats of Chaves County, Tri-City Herald, New York Daily News