ALFRED MAINE – The Zumba instructor who ran a prostitution business in which she videotaped unsuspecting clients so her business partner could watch from his office 160 km away has been released from jail, bringing to a close a scandal featuring sex videos, adultery and a client list with more than 100 names.
Alexis Wright, 30, left the York County Jail in Alfred, Maine, around 9:45 a.m. Saturday after serving nearly six months of a 10-month sentence that was reduced because of good behavior and participation in a work program. Wearing a gray suit and clutching a stack of folders, she strode out of the jail and into the waiting sport utility vehicle driven by her husband.
“I have no comment,” was all Wright said.
The scandal erupted a year ago in an unlikely place, a small town known for its beaches, New England charm and proximity to former President George H.W. Bush’s seaside estate in Kennebunkport.
Wright’s prostitution business came as a surprise to her fitness clients but not to police officers who’d become suspicious after fielding complaints about groaning, loud music and men coming and going from an office Wright rented across the street from her studio.
According to police, her business partner, Mark Strong, watched the sexual encounters unfold in real time on a computer in his insurance business office. In a twist at her sentencing, Wright divulged that she believed Strong had tricked her into believing she was a secret operative investigating sexual deviance.
Prosecutors didn’t buy Wright’s story, saying investigators continued to believe Wright was “a willing participant” in the prostitution business. Detailed records over an 18-month period indicated she made $150,000 tax-free. She also collected more than $40,000 in public assistance, prosecutors said.
Strong, a 58-year-old married father of two, acknowledged having an affair with Wright and helping her start the fitness studio but said he hadn’t profited from the prostitution. He was convicted of 13 counts related to promotion of prostitution and sentenced to 20 days in prison.