NEW YORK TIMES: Stanley Marsh 3, an eccentric millionaire artist best known for his Cadillac Ranch art display along an interstate highway in the Texas Panhandle, has settled lawsuits from 10 teenagers who said he paid them for sex acts, lawyers for both sides announced Saturday. In a prepared statement, the plaintiffs’ lawyer, Anthony Buzbee, and Mr. Marsh’s lawyer, Kelly Utsinger, said the teenagers and Mr. Marsh have resolved their differences and that no side would comment further. The statement was obtained by The Amarillo Globe-News.
Mr. Marsh had a stroke in 2011 and his wife, Gwendolyn Marsh, was later appointed as his guardian. Mr. Marsh also faces six counts of sexual assault and five counts of sexual performance of a child. The charges accuse the 75-year-old millionaire and artist of molesting a 15-year-old boy and a 16-year-old boy in 2010. Mr. Marsh surrendered to the authorities in November and is free on $300,000 bail. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison per count and fines of up to $10,000. His lawyers have denied the charges. The civil suits accused Mr. Marsh of giving the teenagers cash, alcohol, drugs and, in one case, two BMWs, to perform sex acts with him at his office. One of the teenagers said he had more than 100 sexual encounters with Mr. Marsh in his office and at his home in Amarillo. MORE
AMARILLO GLOBE-NEWS: In the suit, Doe 9 claims he was 15 when he visited Marsh 3’s Chase Tower office in 2010, when Marsh 3 told the teen he wanted to see his body and later offered cash if the teen would engage in several sex acts. The suit further alleges Doe 9 engaged in various paid sex acts with Marsh 3 until the summer of 2010, when the then-16-year-old avoided Marsh 3. According to the suit, Doe 10 was one of Marsh 3’s “most trusted aides” and went to Marsh 3’s office in January 2011. Marsh 3, the suit said, asked the teen to take off his clothes, which he did, and asked the teen to put his hand on Marsh 3’s [filtered word]. Marsh 3, according to the suit, then observed through a camera security system that his daughter was getting off the elevator on the 12th floor of Chase Tower near the Marsh offices. Then, the suit said, Marsh 3 hurriedly got dressed and told the youth to do the same. MORE
RELATED: With only an apology from Stanley Marsh 3 made public, the parties in four lawsuits alleging imprisonment, sexual misconduct and harassment of teens agreed to settle the case. “Through this litigation it has been made clear to me that my conduct directed toward these young people was inappropriate, and I apologize for anything I said or did that may have caused them anguish,” Marsh said, according to a statement released by the law firm of Whittenburg, Whittenburg and Schachter.
Marsh has previously said the dispute stems from a long-running feud between the Marsh and Whittenburg families, two of Amarillo’s more prominent families who made millions of dollars in the oil and gas industry.The lawsuits began as one action filed in August 1995 by Ben Whittenburg who was then a senior at Amarillo High School. Other plaintiffs joined the suit over the years, but Senior District Judge John Forbis severed the case into four on April 20, 2000. The four cases involved:
–Ben Whittenburg’s accusations of Marsh confining him in a chicken coop while wielding a hammer, then humiliating him by taking and distributing photographs of him in the coop. “Mr. Marsh, himself, took pictures of me in the pen and told me to smile while he cussed at me,” Ben Whittenburg said in an affidavit. “He said that my mother was ‘trash.’ I was really scared.”
–Blake Junell’s and Jerry Wilhite’s allegation that they were coerced into skinny-dipping with Marsh and his male friends in a pond on Marsh property west of Amarillo. They alleged Marsh then read poetry at the end of a day of working for him as punishment for stealing at least one of the unusual signs he has placed in the Amarillo area. The coercion arose from Marsh’s “obscene and tyrannical ranting and raving about how he would run their names on his television station as ‘thieves,’ ” according to court documents.
–Don Wright’s claim that Marsh fired him after Wright rebuffed his homosexual advances. In a deposition, Wright said Marsh asked him to go to his office to watch pornographic movies while masturbating, according to court documents.
–Jodi Parker’s accusation that Marsh and his associates in clown wigs and Lone Ranger masks terrorized her when they came to her family’s home looking for one of her stepbrothers. MORE