School Officials Question Rob Lowe’s Community Service Sentence
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Los Angeles school officials are questioning whether actor Rob Lowe, currently filming the movie ″Bad Influence,″ can be a good influence for young students.
″I certainly need to know what his knowledge and expertise are,″ Jackie Goldberg, board president of the nation’s second-largest school district, said Monday. ″And I would want to know who is monitoring his talks for appropriate behavior and who is monitoring him for appropriate behavior.″
Lowe, 25, was accused of sexual exploitation for allegedly videotaping a 16-year-old girl performing a sex act with a female companion in an Atlanta hotel room during the 1988 Democratic National Convention.
Last Friday in Georgia, the actor agreed with Fulton County District Attorny Lewis R. Slaton to perform 20 hours of community service to avoid prosecution on a charge that carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $100,000 fine.
The duty could include warning students against the dangers of drugs. Slaton said Lowe’s attorneys suggested the actor lecture in high schools in Los Angeles, and possibly in his home state of Ohio. A decision isn’t expected for several weeks, and Slaton said Lowe would be assigned a different type of service if the school board does not allow him to lecture.
Lowe didn’t receive special treatment, although his celebrity status would be a powerful tool, Slaton said.
″The idea was that the students would pay attention to him because of who he is,″ he said. ″He might be able to speak their language.″
But school board member Julie Korenstein said she regarded the agreement as unusual because of the nature of the charges against Lowe.
″This has a little strange shade to it,″ she said. ″There is something not quite right.″
″We will want a guarantee for the parents of our children that children are protected,″ Ms. Goldberg said. ″It appears on the surface he has, at minimum, dubious judgment.″
The actor, who starred in ″St. Elmo’s Fire″ and ″About Last Night...,″ still faces a civil suit from the mother of Jan Parsons, the teen-ager he allegedly videotaped.
In ″Bad Influence,″ Lowe plays a manipulative cad who is ″one of those guys your friends tell you to stay away from, but you don’t want to because he’s so much fun,″ screenwriter David Koepp has said.