A judge Friday signed an order allowing Linda Lusk to attend two of her son's baseball games, but said she must get permission before going to any other events on Prosser school grounds to avoid crossing paths with her reported victim.
A no-contact order has been in place since Lusk, 50, was first charged last June for allegedly exchanging sexually explicit text messages with a 14-year-old boy.
Lusk is required to stay away from the boy while the case is pending, which her lawyers have said makes it difficult for her to attend Prosser High School events where he or his family are present.
Defense attorney Jim Egan said Prosser Superintendent Ray Tolcacher "is taking the no-contact order to mean the defendant cannot come onto any school, not just the high school."
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Egan said the order should be amended just to say that Lusk must stay away from the protected party, instead of essentially placing her "on house arrest."
She wants to participate in school-related events with her children, and the court should encourage that kind of activity as "good public policy," he said.
If Lusk arrives on school grounds and finds the boy also is there for a particular activity she will turn and leave, he added.
Prosecutor Andy Miller argued that the boy should be able to go to school and not worry if he will run into Lusk.
In February, Superior Court Judge Carrie Runge said Lusk could attend her daughter's basketball game and parent-teacher conferences at school. But she added that any future visits to school grounds would be considered on a case-by-case basis and must have prior approval.
The judge stuck to that order Friday after Egan and co-counsel Larry Stephenson asked to clarify it.
Runge said it is in Lusk's "best interest" to have a protection order, so the defendant and law enforcement officers understand the conditions. She agreed to let Lusk attend two middle school baseball games next week.
"If she has specific events she wishes to attend, I can certainly sign an order once the victim's family knows what the request is," she added, saying that permission is only needed for school grounds and not activities on "the streets of Prosser."
Lusk is charged in Benton County Superior Court with third-degree child molestation, third-degree rape of a child and communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.
In addition to the text messages, prosecutors allege that she had sexual contact with the teen.
Her trial is May 16, though Egan said Friday that he would prefer May 31 because of witness schedules.
Miller told the court he came into the hearing "wanting to be cooperative" and planning to agree to a one-week delay to May 23, but said he was surprised by the request for even more time.
Miller said he met with the boy's family Thursday night and that date worked for them, and added that any delay would push the Lusk trial into another expected trial for a fatal home invasion.
Runge did not rule on the trial date issue, but did briefly say that statements Lusk made to police during the investigation can be used at her trial.
Lusk will be back in court Friday for a pretrial hearing.