Lu Parker. Photo: YouTube
Lu Parker. Photo: YouTube

KTLA news anchor and 1994 Miss USA pageant winner Lu Parker will avoid criminal charges by participating in a diversion program after her arrest last month on suspicion of stealing headphones at a TSA security screening area at Los Angeles International Airport, according to city prosecutors.

Police followed her onto the plane after she had boarded and arrested her before the aircraft left the gate.

“If successfully completed, no criminal charges will be filed,” Frank Mateljan with the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office said. “Specific details about participation and outcome are confidential.”

Parker, whose legal name is Frances Louise Parker, was taken into custody Nov. 2 at a Transportation Security Administration screening area in Terminal 6, according to Airport Police Officer Rob Pedregon. She was taken to the Los Angeles Police Department Pacific Station to be booked on suspicion of petty theft, he said.

According to TMZ.com, Parker allegedly took a pair of headphones valued at $200 from the TSA screening area and then walked to her gate and boarded her flight. The headphones were owned by an LAPD Robbery-Homicide detective, according to TMZ, which reported that Parker was taken off the plane by police before the aircraft left the gate.

Parker, a 48-year-old midday news anchor on KTLA and former girlfriend of then-Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, was subsequently released.

In a statement to the Los Angeles Times, KTLA officials called the situation a misunderstanding. According to the station, Parker was en route to visit her ailing father and when she went through TSA security, she noticed that someone had left a set of earbud headphones behind.

“She picked them up intending to return them to the owner whom she had been speaking with while in line to clear TSA,” according to the station. Parker was unable to find the owner and boarded her flight.

“We believe this is a misunderstanding, Lu is cooperating fully with the authorities and we are confident she will be able to clear this all up,” station officials said.

–City News Service

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