Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Debra LaFave: The Monster Among Us

Disgraced ex-teacher Debra LaFave, who admitted raping having sexual relations with her then 14-year-old male student, will not be facing any jail time and may escape being prosecuted altogether:
A former Florida teacher who pleaded guilty to having sex with a 14-year-old boy will not have to stand trial on additional charges because prosecutors dropped those charges on Tuesday.

Debra LaFave pleaded guilty in November in Tampa to committing lewd and lascivious battery on a student who attended the middle school where she taught in Florida's Hillsborough County.

Under the plea agreement reached with the Hillsborough prosecutors, LaFave, 25, was sentenced to three years of house arrest and seven years probation.

She faced additional charges in neighboring Marion County for having sex with the same student during a trip there.

Prosecutors in Marion County agreed to the same plea because the boy's parents said they did not want him to have to testify at what was expected to be a widely covered and televised trial.

"I am very remorseful," LaFave said at a news conference in Tampa. "I was very nervous (about a trial)."

LaFave said she has bipolar disorder and is receiving therapy for the mental disorder.

Her attorney, John Fitzgibbons, said last year that LaFave would be in danger in prison because she was so beautiful. She is a former model who posed in a bikini for a motorcycle magazine.

LaFave had taught reading at the Greco Middle School for two years until her arrest in June 2004. Her husband, who divorced her after she was arrested, has remarried. LaFave recently became engaged to a friend from high school.
It appears if her attorney's statement that Lafave was "too beautiful" to go to prison is about to come true. It seems as though our society is more than willing to cut much more extra slack for those who happen to be physically alluring attractive and/or are Hollywood stars.

As for Debra LaFave, she is now free to profit financially from her notoriety. My guess is that she will now make a multi-million dollar appearence in Playboy and be the subject of a Lifetime made-for-TV-movie. She probably won't have to worry about putting in an honest day's work for the rest of her life...

Is there a double-standard when it comes to teachers who are accused of molesting their students? ABC News makes the case.

Where is the "justice" in our so-called criminal justice system?
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