KENNEBUNK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The Superior Court has denied an attempt to block the list of Kennebunk johns from being made public.
The lawyer for two alleged johns in the prostitution case had filed an appeal with the Superior Court saying that releasing the names would be detrimental to their lives, therefore going against the invasion of privacy statute.
Stephen Schwartz is representing John Doe #1 and John Doe #2.
He says this case has stirred up national press, garnering thousands of Google hits and hundreds of articles in newspapers. He even quotes one article in which the wife of an alleged john was quoted saying her children's lives will be ruined if the list comes out and her husband contemplates suicide.
Alexis Wright, a 29-year-old Zumba instructor, has pleaded not guilty to 106 counts of prostitution, invasion of privacy, and other charges in this case. Her business partner also has pleaded not guilty to 59 misdemeanor counts.
Police say Wright kept records of all of the men who paid to sleep with her, and the list is rumored to contain names of prominent community members.
Schwartz claims in this Superior Court appeal that because this case has become so well-known, releasing the names of his clients will create the very harm that the Invasion of privacy statute seeks to prevent.
The Superior Court ruled Monday afternoon against the appeal. Justice Thomas Warren said:
"Indeed, while the court does not minimize the harm to the reputations and family ties that may result from the disclosure of the names of persons charged with the misdemeanor offense of engaging a prostitute under the circumstances of this case, the court also cannot conclude that the public interest would not be adversely affected by the grant of a TRO in this case... If persons charged with crimes could withhold their identities, the public would not be able to monitor proceedings to observe whether justice has been done."
The court did uphold one part of the appeal; some of the alleged johns claim to have been videotaped without their consent; a violation, they say, of their privacy.
Because of that, the addresses of those johns will not be released.