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City prosecutor accused in LSU sex incident was involved in Mississippi lawsuit


WALKER, La. -- The Walker city prosecutor was arrested Friday on allegations he was seeking sexual favors in an LSU restroom resigned from city employment over the weekend.

Michael Cupit, 60, was booked on a count of obscenity Friday after he exposed himself through a hole in a restroom stall wall in Tureaud Hall and asked the man in the adjacent stall for oral sex, according to the LSU police report.

Cupit had been banned from the building in 2011 after a similar incident, according to police.

But without an arrest in the prior incident, two background checks the city ran on Cupit for employment purposes both came back clean, Mayor Rick Ramsey said Monday.

The Walker Police Department ran the first background check on Cupit as a matter of routine, before his initial appointment as the city's part-time prosecutor and attorney in January 2014, Ramsey said.

But the second check -- after Cupit's job converted to a full-time position in August 2015 -- was prompted by a Walker resident's call to Ramsey about a lawsuit involving Cupit and a Mississippi woman's estate, Ramsey said.

The case revolved around the relationship between Cupit and a woman 55 years his senior, widowed and childless and living in an antebellum home sitting on 205 acres her family had owned for more than a century, just outside Liberty, Mississippi.

According to court records, Cupit first met Mary Lea Reid in 1979, the summer before he entered law school, when he stopped by her property to learn more about the place where his maternal grandparents had sharecropped during the Great Depression.

Cupit visited Reid multiple times over the next few years, performing odd jobs for her while she shared stories about the area's history.

By the time Cupit graduated from law school in 1982, Reid had deeded him the property and written the first of two wills leaving him all of her belongings. Four years later, she adopted him.

Read more of this story on The Advocate's website.