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Judge weighing issues in Franks vs. Scott case

TUPELO — A Lee County judge is weighing issues related to an ongoing dispute related to an affair between the former local school superintendent and wife of an ex-lawmaker.

The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reports Circuit Judge Henry Lackey on Thursday heard arguments from three sides about three cases, but the focus was on former superintendent Mike Scott’s 2010 complaint that Jamie Franks tried to pressure him out of elected office to avoid an alienation of affection lawsuit.

Scott admits an affair with Franks’ then-wife, Lisa, who worked with him at the school district. Scott lost his re-election bid in November.

Scott’s attorney, Jim Waide, told Lackey that Scott’s alleged abuse at Jamie Franks’ hands offsets any monetary award due to Franks.

Scott claims he’s suffered damages from an alleged conspiracy between Franks, a former lawmaker and ex-chairman of the Mississippi Democratic Party, and others to embarrass him, interfere with his job and defame him.

Also under the gun is the Lee County School Board, which Franks insists is liable for knowing about the affair and approving taxpayer expenses for travel, accommodations and gifts, which he claims furthered the alienation of affection.

The board’s insurance company argues that it isn’t obliged to cover Scott’s legal bills, although the board says it is.

Last April, Franks countersued Scott for $500,000. He also asked the court to throw out Scott’s claims against him.

Franks’ attorney, Jason Herring, told Lackey that if Scott is due anything from a trial, a jury will make that determination.

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