Former Teachers Arrested as Sex Abuse Lawsuit Begins

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - Two former Kentucky middle school teachers
have been arrested for allegedly sexually abusing a student decades
ago.

The arrests coincided with the beginning of the student's civil trial against a local board of education in which she claims the board concealed the teachers' pattern of abuse.

Former Beaumont Junior High School teacher Roberta Walter, known at the time as Roberta Blackwell, was arrested late Monday night in Nashville, Tenn., and charged with third-degree sodomy and third-degree rape, Lexington Police Sgt. Jesse Harris said.

Russell Hubbard, a former science teacher, was arrested in Pennsylvania and charged with third-degree rape and four counts of
first-degree sodomy. The arrests were first reported by the Lexington Herald-Leader.

Both are accused of raping Carol Lynne Maner when she was a 15-year-old student at Beaumont Junior High in the late 1970s. They were in police custody on Tuesday and will be extradited to Lexington.

It is unclear whether the arrests would affect Maner's long-running lawsuit against the Fayette County Board of Education, which began Monday and is expected to last several weeks.

Maner has accused the board of concealing evidence of a pattern of sexual abuse by four teachers, a guidance counselor and an assistant principal at Beaumont and Lafayette High School nearly 30 years ago.

On the first day of arguments, attorney Chris Miller of Lexington, warned jurors to be prepared for disturbing details of Maner's sexual abuse that was so rampant "that you may think there is no way this could happen in this community."

Larry C. Deener, who represents the school board, defended the school board and said administrators were not responsible for Maner's abuse, were not aware of it at the time and did not cause it.

"The suggestion that there was this permissive, rampant behavior and that the board didn't care" is not true, he said.

Maner came forward with allegations of abuse in August 2003 claiming that the school board ignored complaints from her mother that Maner was being abused.

Miller said then-superintendent Guy S. Potts asked the school principal to investigate allegations that Maner was having a sexual relationship with one of her teachers, but he did not say it was suspected to be abuse.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by anna Location: Louisville on Jul 11, 2007 at 09:04 PM
    Did I read that she has a book deal in the works? Everybody wants to sue everybody; everybody wants a book deal. Everybody wants a lifetime movie. Well, not everyone; just a few who don't mind sensationlism to get it. Why would these people want to come back thirty years later unless for money? Why don't we all sue each other. I smell a scam. Show me the proof.
  • by sharon Location: ky. on Jul 11, 2007 at 07:54 PM
    come on WHY did it take over 30 years to TELL. SOMEONE wants money and attention..kids lie,lie,lie,and some adults want attention,so what is the best way...acuse a teacher.
  • by Evelyn Location: Lexington on Jul 11, 2007 at 02:47 PM
    My children went to Beaumont at the time, and drugs and fights were in the schools. I was told if my children tried to protect themselves they would be in as much trouble as the bully. My children were afraid to go to the bathrooms and the teachers didn't seem to want to know what was going on. Ms. Blackwell had a baby by one of her students,at this time, because she would bring it next door for another Beaumont teacher to see. I'm glad she will not be able to teach again, there are enough good art teachers that can take her place and we wouldn't have to be afraid of our kids being raped.
  • by Rose Location: Louisville on Jul 11, 2007 at 09:40 AM
    Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty. Maybe the teachers are innocent and maybe not. All we can be sure of is that another trila lawyer is going to make a bundle of dough. In any event, the lives of the two teachers are ruined. They'll never work in another school and they'll probably end up losing their life's savings.
  • by Ponder Location: Downtown on Jul 11, 2007 at 07:52 AM
    What a joke! SOund to me like Maner knew exactly what she was doing at the time. She got a car, trips and a apartment. Come on people, you may think teenagers are young and innocent but you are truly deceiving yourself if you believe that. This is all about money and nothing else.
  • by unknown Location: ky. on Jul 11, 2007 at 01:07 AM
    This is so sad, You think when you send your kids to school that they are safe, and that the teachers are gonna protect them, but instead, the parents are now not welcome in our schools anymore and our kids are being abused by the ones who are supposed to take care of them, does that make sense?
  • by ruth anne hurst Location: lexington ky on Jul 10, 2007 at 08:22 PM
    i was a student at the time it was happenning and knew of it but consolor whicxh has deceased now told us to keep quit and gave us money to do so and then lied to my parents and got me into trouble and punished cause mrs blackwell said i stole it from pep club when actually she gave me the money to keep quit all students knew it was going on but being young we didnt know what to do .so im glad that its out and shes finally getting her punishment for it .
  • by Jeanie Location: Lexington on Jul 10, 2007 at 07:44 PM
    Nothing could make me happier than to read of these monsters' arrests. So many young people's lives have been ruined over trust issues caused by those who are to teach and protect them. All of us seem to have experienced this in our own families or have knowledge of it. So many teacher are guilty of sin of ommission. Disgusting!

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