Arrested and Charged With Statutory Rape
By the summer of 1996, LeTourneau's affair with Fualaau was spiraling out of control.
They were having sex at all hours of the day — at her home, at school, in her car. All the while, they were hiding their relationship from both the community and their families.
LeTourneau said she was hoping that she could be with Fualaau in a few years, after she finalized her divorce and established herself on her own with her children.
The relationship became more difficult to hide when LeTourneau became pregnant.
Secretly carrying Fualaau's child, she still hoped her relationship with the boy would not be discovered. But shortly after, in early 1997, her husband found a love letter she had written. He confronted Fualaau who admitted he was sleeping with LeTourneau. A relative of LeTourneau's husband contacted the authorities. She was pulled out of a faculty meeting at school and arrested by the Seattle police.
LeTourneau had been hoping she could make it through another month "put in for my maternity leave and retire," she said. Even after her arrest, LeTourneau said she didn't realize the serious charges she could face.
"I was imagining there's probably some community service hours, for situations like this, and I actually didn't think that I needed an attorney even," she said.
She was charged with raping a child, a felony that carried a 7 1/2-year prison sentence in the state of Washington. She was advised to accept a settlement with reduced prison time, and she pleaded guilty.
LeTourneau served six months in jail. The rest of the 7 1/2 years would be suspended as long as she agreed to attend psychiatric counseling and stay away from Fualaau, who had just become the father of her fifth child — a baby girl.
Staying away from Fualaau upon her release wasn't as easy as it sounded. In addition to being barred from seeing Fualaau, she said a counselor told her she would not be permitted any contact with her children during the first six months of her release.
As soon as she was released from jail, she resumed her relationship with Fualaau. A month later, they were caught by the police at 3 a.m. parked in her car on a quiet street corner, just one block from her home.
LeTourneau was arrested and ordered by the court to serve out the rest of her sentence.
She said she decided to violate the terms of her release, so she could be returned to prison where she would be permitted to have visits from her children. "There was no deterrent for me to not to see Vili Fualaau. He was the father of my newborn, we loved each other and the worst that could happen was that I would go to prison, which I was going to anyway," she told Walters.
Thinking she could fight her case from prison, LeTourneau figured she had nothing to lose. Then there was another bombshell: LeTourneau was pregnant again, with Fualaau's second child.
LeTourneau's life had now hit rock bottom. She was being led away in handcuffs, ridiculed by the tabloids. Her new baby — another girl — would be born in prison. And her husband would soon file for divorce and move their four children to Alaska.
Reunited and Planning to Wed
But that chapter of Letourneau's life is over. Upon her release from prison, Fualaau asked the court to lift its no-contact order against Letourneau. They are reunited, very much in love, and planning to marry.