The Debra Lafave sex scandal is a well-documented scandal in the United States of America. In 2004, it was reported that a 24-year-old newly married middle school teacher was arrested for having sexual intercourse with her pupil – a 14-year old boy – and was charged. That teacher was no other but the stunningly beautiful blonde, Debra Lafave.
The former teacher has since reverted to her maiden name, Debra Beasley as she was divorced by her then-husband, Owen Lafave. The trial of her case left so many onlookers disappointed and unsatisfied with the way the case was determined and also with the subsequent sentence that she received. Some, including her ex-husband, insisted that she deserved to spend time behind bars.
This article highlights the scandal, bringing you the details you must have missed, plus it also takes a look at where Debra Lafave is at the moment and how she has managed to pick up her life in trying to move ahead from the ugly episode. Read on…
Debra Lafave’s Biography
Born Debra Jean Beasley in the US state of Florida on the 28th day of August 1980, Debra LaFave (as she is widely known), as a teacher in a middle school, was found guilty of sexually assaulting a minor. Nothing about her father is known but her mother (whose name is not known) was diagnosed with cancer for a second time during the period of her daughter’s trial.
Growing up as a child with her family, the beautiful blonde didn’t have it smoothly as she suffered from depression and traumas, including alimentary disorder. She was even diagnosed and treated for bipolar disorder. All these were coupled with the fact that she was raped at the age of thirteen and also lost her elder sister to sudden death, having been killed in a car accident by a drunk driver.
Debra Lafave attended Bloomingdale High School in Valrico, Florida before proceeding to the University of South Florida where she majored in and obtained a degree in English Literature because she always wanted to be a teacher. It was on her first job as a teacher, which she got after graduating from college, that she got involved in the scandal that would keep her away from any classroom all her life.
Having read the brief introduction to this article one may be wondering how a beautiful and married teacher, who is supposed to be a role model to the kid under her care, transform into a ravaging sex offender with a male student that she was older than by almost half her age at the time? It was in May 2004 that the issue came to light.
Debra Lafave had gone with a 14-year-old boy, whose name is not given to his cousin’s place with Lafave accompanying him as his “girlfriend.” However, it was not going to end as just a visit because the boy’s aunt (the mother of the cousin they went to visit), who probably was not supposed to be at home on the day of the visit was home and saw her nephew with an older woman who was dressed in a sexual manner.
The sight worried her and she went ahead to call her sister (the boy’s mother) and reported what she saw and when he returned home, his mother demanded to know who that lady with him was and even though he was reluctant to reveal her identity, he would do so eventually and so the police at Tampa was called into the matter.
It was revealed that Debra Lafave, a school teacher at Angelo L. Greco Middle School in Temple Terrace, Florida had had sexual intercourse with the pupil (a 14-year-old minor) at least on three occasions in four days, including one time at the backseat of a car which was driven around by his 15-year-old cousin. She had also performed several bouts of oral sex on the minor and had even taken him to her matrimonial home on one of their sexual episodes.
At the time of this event, Debra Lafave was newly married to Owen Lafave and their marriage was just about one year old. She was arrested and charged with two counts of lewd and lascivious battery and faced a possible 30 years in prison after she was convicted of the misdemeanor.
However, the family of the victim never wanted her to spend time in prison as they were worried about the effect it may have on their son (the publicity the case generated was already having an adverse effect on him). She was therefore offered a plea bargain that would ensure she avoided trial. The defense team accepted it which meant she was convicted and as such, she lost her teaching license.
Lafave was given a 10-year sentence – 7 years sex offender probation and 3 years of community service and house arrest – in 2006. Terms of the probation included her registering as a sex offender, a restraining order to stay away from children, and an injunction to be at home by 10 p.m daily. Many observers believe the sentence was far too lenient for the crime while others argued if a man would have been such a light sentence if the tables were turned.
Her probation was terminated with four years left by a court in September 2011, much to the chagrin of the victim’s family who appealed the decision. And so the probation was reinstated by the 2nd District Court of Appeals one year later in August 2012. Debra Lafave, however, took the case up before the Florida Supreme court and the court ruled in her favor two years later in October 2014.
Married Life – New and Ex-Husband
Debra Lafave was married to her then-husband, Kristian Owen LaFave when her illicit sexual affair with a pupil in her school broke out. They were married on the 19th of July 2003 which was a year after she started teaching. Information regarding their life as a couple is unavailable, however, following the scandal and her subsequent arrest in 2004, their marriage suffered as a result and by 2005, she and Owen had a divorce.
Owen went on several TV shows talking about the scandal and also insinuated that he feels his ex-wife was let off the hook so easily. However, that did not stop the blue-eyed beauty from finding love again. She got engaged to Shawn Haverfield, a restaurant owner in Florida and she had twin boys who were born in 2011 – for him. It is not clear whether they got married or not but the relationship did not last long as in 2016, they were in court over custody of their children.
What is Debra Lafave Up To Now?
Lafave has tried to ease into life again following her tumultuous past. Having moved past the legal burden, following the ruling by the Florida Supreme court, she has picked up her maiden name – Beasley – once again now lives in Ruskin with her parents where she helps them in their business and also takes care of her twins.
Since she can no longer be in a classroom as a teacher or anywhere near minors, she has tried to work different jobs including as a waitress in a restaurant and also as a receptionist. She has since converted to Christianity but still has to deal with people staring at her in the streets and making nasty comments.