Kaitlyn Hunt, Facing Felonies for Relationship With Minor Female Classmate, Will Spend 19th Birthday in Court Today UPDATE
UPDATE: Hunt was offered a new plea deal this afternoon that would leave her with two misdemeanor counts of battery as well as a felony count of interference in child custody. Under the new deal, Hunt would not face any jail time and would not have to register as a sex offender.
Pre-trial conferences will resume today for Kaitlyn Hunt, the Sebastian River High School student who was expelled and charged with two felonies for an alleged relationship with a younger female classmate. Hunt turns 19 today, according to police affidavits from her arrest in February, and she will be spending her birthday at the Indian River County Courthouse.
The hearing begins at 1:30 p.m. and will mostly focus on the state's request that the younger girl give her statement in a closed courtroom, Kaitlyn's mom, Kelley Hunt-Smith, told Riptide. Today will be the first time anything has happened with the case since the trial was postponed at the end of last month.
Having the younger girl -- who was 14 at the time of the relationship -- deliver her statement in private makes sense. It is common practice to protect alleged victims of sex crimes from media scrutiny, especially when they are minors. However, some media outlets published the full arrest affidavit in May. The document gives a re-cap of a night the younger girl spent at Hunt's house, dialogue from a recorded phone call between the girls and a summary of an intimate encounter that took place at Sebastian River High School.
High school encounters typically run on a scale of embarrassing to traumatizing, but the fallout of what transpired between Hunt and her basketball teammate blows that scale to smithereens. Most people don't want to recall those first awkward encounters, but both Hunt and her then-girlfriend will have will have those memories permanently cataloged in national newspapers. Hopefully this motion will pass to protect the girls from further scrutiny.
Hunt has only seen the younger girl once since the whole ordeal began, said Hunt-Smith, at a hearing right after Hunt's arrest. Although Hunt is required to be at the hearing today, the younger girl is not.
The original trial date was set for September 9 but was canceled in lieu of a murder trial. On August 22, Judge Robert Pegg will decide if he wants to set a new date or if he will dismiss the case.