Court Records: Westlake impregnated minor at age 28
Rep. Dean Westlake's (D-Kiana) announcement of resignation Friday was met with relief, at least by one woman. But for her, it isn't the end, but rather the beginning of an even bigger movement-- one that could carry legal consequences for Westlake.
Decades before running for state office, Westlake was a Corporal in the Kotzebue Police Department. It was around this time in that office that he had sexual relations with a minor.
Joslynn Stein, now known by her married name, Joslynn Little, is living proof of that relationship.
"I believe she was 15-years-old, and I don't know if she was the babysitter or not," Little said of her mother's physical relationship with Westlake.
Little's birth certificate and a court-ordered paternity test confirm her mother was just 16 when she was born, and her father, Westlake, was 28. Little was born in 1988. According to state law in 1987, the legal age for consent was 18 if the person is under the adult's legal care, otherwise, it's 16 years of age. "It's a small village-type of deal. People know about it. It's all in the rumors, the grapevine knows, but no one's actually doing anything," Little said.
A public records request by KTVA revealed Westlake was working for the Kotzebue Police Department up until two months prior to when Little was conceived. She says her grandfather tried to press charges because her mother was only 15 at the time but they never stuck.
"He fled town, and then the next thing you know, we don't hear from him anymore," Little said of Westlake.
Little says her mother agreed not to press for child support if Westlake maintained a relationship with Little.
"He talked to me, but there was no communication. It was basically like a business associate saying, 'Hey, how was your day? How's the weather?' So far and so forth. It was never intimate, but other than that, no, I never had a conversation with him," Little said of her relationship with Westlake.
Little, now 29 years-old, is pregnant herself, with her third child -- a little girl named Zoe. She says she has introduced her children to her father, but she would never leave them alone with Westlake.
"There's no bad feelings, there's no bad blood. We're rooting for him personally. He wants to do good? Good for him. And if the people choose him then that's okay, but the people have a right to know everything from the past," Little said. "It's a strange place to be, in a small village, those things get swept under the rug."
Little worries there may be more under that rug.
"If it happened to my mother and she's a little kid, he was blaming her, who else is having this done to them behind closed doors?" Little said. "You don't know who else this happened to, and they're just not coming forward. And you know, anyone that's going to talk about this, he's a big, political guy, you know, with really a lot of people just pushing for him. So, it's terrifying to come up and talk ill about him towards anyone."
Little says she's no longer afraid to talk about what her father did.
"We shouldn't be afraid of speaking something, especially when we know right from wrong," Little said.
She hopes to inspire anyone with a similar experience to do the same. She says she recently learned she has seven siblings from Westlake's previous relations.
"And counting. You never know who's going to come forward next," Little said.
As for Westlake, Little says she hopes he gets help.
"I think he should just seek counsel on what he should do, get into some type of medication, some type of class to learn how to cope with appropriate behavior with people," Little said.
According to state law, prosecution for offenses such as felony sexual abuse of a minor may be commenced at any time -- regardless of when the offense was committed.
Rep. Dean Westlake (D-Kiana) resigned Friday, as information surfaced from court documents that Westlake impregnated a minor when he was 28-years-old and had been working in the Kotzebue Police Dept.
On KTVA's Evening News, Jay Parmley, executive director of the Alaska Democratic Party, discusses what the party knew about Westlake prior to his run for state office, and why the party chose to support him as a candidate in 2016 Democratic primary against incumbent Ben Nageak. You can watch the clip in the video player above, it follows the segment on this story.
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