Zumba Instructor Out of Jail EarlyBy: Shana Norris - November 23, 2013
The Zumba instructor who was running a prostitution ring out of her store front Zumba studio has been released from jail early. Alexis Wright left the York County Jail in Alfred, Maine on Saturday morning after serving a little less than six months of her 10-month sentence.
Wright’s jail term was reduced due to good behavior and her participation in a work program, according to a York County Jail spokesperson.
Wright was sentenced in May in accordance with a plea deal that she had worked out with prosecutors in March. The Zumba instructor pleaded guilty to 20 counts of prostitution, tax evasion, and welfare fraud. Wright was originally charged with over 100 counts. According to court documents, prosecutors dropped more than 80 of those, and reduced some of the tax-related charges from felonies to misdemeanors.
At her sentencing in May, Wright told the judge “I’m a person who knows the difference between right and wrong. And for those reasons I chose to take the time in jail to take responsibility for my actions.”
Yet Wright claimed that she had been manipulated into starting the prostitution ring by another player in the headline-making case: her business partner Mark Strong. At her sentencing, she told the judge that Strong had tricked her into believing she was a secret operative investigating sexual deviances.
“My story might sound crazy but you can’t argue with the truth at the end of the day,” said Wright.
Wright claimed that she never engaged in a prostitution session unless Strong knew about it ahead of time and was watching via Skype as it happened. More than 13,000 Skype snapshots were eventually pulled off Strong’s computer.
That footage, along with the detailed records Wright kept, made the case national news. Wright’s prostitution clients allegedly included prominent local politicians, lawyers, and law enforcement officers.
Strong, married with two children, admitted to having an affair with Wright. He acknowledged having helped her start up her Kennebunk Zumba studio, but denied ever profiting from the prostitution. He was convicted of promotion of prostitution and sentenced to 20 days in jail.
In addition to the 10 months of jail time, Wright’s sentence included $57,000 in restitution and $1,00 in fines in connection with the tax- and welfare-related charges.
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