[Editor’s Note: The following lines are extracted from a story written by Missy Stoddard of the Sun Sentinel. Readers will be able to find the full original story through their own search efforts. Thank you to FloridaOps for advising us of this case.]
In explicit detail, the boy described the genesis of his relationship with Flannigan, who mentored the musically gifted boy and his brothers, who had a singing group. Flannigan, he said, arranged for them to perform and drove them to appearances in her van. Eventually, the children began having regular sleepovers at Flannigan’s home.
After the first encounter, the boy and Flannigan had sex during each sleepover, he said. But the interludes weren’t limited to the home, according to the boy, with incidents of sexual contact also occurring at John Prince Park in Lantana, in a hotel room during a trip to Orlando and in her van as they sat in the Civil Air Patrol parking lot.
Flannigan’s husband, Douglas DePue, caught the boy and Flannigan engaged in sex but never reacted to it, according to the child. Once, the boy said, DePue saw Flannigan on top of the boy but just walked past. Another time, according to the teen, DePue lay in the same bed as Flannigan and the boy had sex.
The boy was not the only member of the family privy to Flannigan’s affections, according to the boy. He said that he once caught his brother kissing her and that he thought his father might also have been “interested” in Flannigan. The child’s father has admitted to also having a sexual relationship with Flannigan.
The boy said Flannigan told him she was “dating” at least three other men — two fellow teachers and a lieutenant in the Civil Air Patrol — at the time he was allegedly involved with her.
UPDATE (1 March 2006): Teacher gets 5 Years for Relationship with 11-Year-Old
A former Boynton Beach, FL, elementary school music teacher charged with having a sexual relationship with an 11-year-old pupil has been sentenced to five years in prison.
Prosecutors reduced the charges to lewd and lascivious acts in exchange for Carol Lynn Flannigan’s guilty plea.
Flannigan, 51, accepted the deal Monday, allowing her to avoid a possible life sentence on the original charges of capital sexual battery for her alleged 19-month relationship with the boy. Following her prison term, Flannigan will serve 10 years of sex offender probation.
She must report back to court March 13 for prison. She’ll face a 15-year sentence if she does not show up or is arrested in the meantime.
Assistant State Attorney Jennifer Millien declined comment on the plea agreement.
Defense attorney Ken Ronan said Flannigan took the deal because she could not risk going to trial. He said Flannigan has an autistic teenage son.
The boy’s family is relieved the criminal case is over, according to their attorney, Daniel Bachi.
Authorities say Flannigan developed a close relationship with the Rolling Green Elementary pupil and his family, inviting him and two younger brothers to sleep over at her Boca Raton home.
The boy has testified that sexual encounters occurred in Flannigan’s classroom, in her van in the Civil Air Patrol parking lot, a Lantana park and an Orlando hotel room.
He has also claimed that Flannigan’s husband, Douglas DePue, witnessed the alleged sex, but ignored it. DePue has denied the allegations.
The boy and his father, who has also reportedly acknowledged having a sexual relationship with Flannigan, settled a $1.5 million claim with DePue’s insurance company last summer. Lawsuits against the Palm Beach County School Board and the Civil Air Patrol are pending.
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