Until she was indicted on multiple sex abuse charges on Wednesday, Baltimore socialite Molly Shattuck was practically perfect.
In the '80s, Shattuck hit the trifecta of high school success: captain of the varsity cheerleading team, homecoming queen, and voted most popular in her class. Thirty years later, she was a pillar of the community, a mother to three, and married to multimillionaire husband, Mayo Shattuck III, chairman of the Chicago-based electric and gas company, Exelon Corp.
The elfin philanthropist once described in Sports Illustrated as “Martha Stewart on fast-forward,” cheered for the Baltimore Ravens when she was pushing 40 years old, ran a marathon and climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro. She bakes cookies for charitable causes, throws lavish dinner parties and fundraisers for hundreds of guests, and serves on several high-profile boards like Johns Hopkins Children's Center, to which Shattuck and her husband also donated huge sums. Her many hobbies include tap dancing, baking, and lots and lots of crafting.
She’s even got her own lifestyle brand; though I’d posit she’s less Martha, more Baltimore’s sportier, blonder, version of Gwyneth.
The aspiring nutrition and lifestyle guru’s 5-foot, 4-inch, 110-pound frame hosts a seemingly boundless energy. That, coupled with her obscene enthusiasm for H20, make her a sort of antithesis to The Graduate’s prickly, martini-sipping Mrs. Robinson. Yet this is the character to whom Shattuck is now most likely to be compared.
The Molly Shattuck who turned herself in to Delaware's Sussex County Superior courthouse Wednesday looked markedly different from the socialite Barbie known among Baltimore’s most well-to-do and in larger circles as the oldest cheerleader in the history of the NFL.
The 47-year-old mother of three was indicted on nine counts: two of third-degree rape, four of unlawful sexual contact, and two of providing alcohol to minors. The crimes stem from Shattuck’s sexual relationship with a 15-year-old boy that culminated in oral sex and illegal sexual contact at a beach house over Labor Day weekend, according to the indictment and unreleased court affidavits obtained by NBC affiliate WBAL in Baltimore.
Shattuck pleaded not guilty to the charges. Combined, they carry a maximum sentence of 52 years, the District Attorney’s office told The Daily Beast, though prosecutors will likely have to fight the common, if misguided, notion that a 15-year-old boy was a willing participant in such a sexual relationship.
Released on an $84,000 secured bond, Shattuck walked silently from the courthouse Wednesday morning wearing a stunned expression under her grey plastic eyeglasses and a conservative herringbone suit jacket, buttoned up to her mid-neck. She had gathered her platinum hair loosely in a black scrunchie.
“This is a difficult situation for everyone involved,” defense attorney Michelle Lipkowitz told a reporter outside the county courthouse after Shattuck’s arraignment. Another of Shattuck’s attorneys, Eugene Maurer, told the Associated Press that his client was “quite distraught and dealing with it the best she can.”
Requests for further comment were not returned.
According to the documents, though the victim and Shattuck’s son are the same age and attend the same school (which has since barred her from the campus) Shattuck first saw the alleged victim in pictures on Instagram and passed along her phone number. “We would have fun together," Shattuck allegedly wrote. Because the boy is a minor, The Daily Beast is not releasing his name.
Shattuck has deleted her Instagram profile so her comments on his photos are no longer visible, but replies to her username on the boy’s photos suggest the two communicated publicly online between May and August of this year, supporting the affidavits’ claims. In recent months, the boy responded to Shattuck with kissy-face and heart-eyed emoticons.
Soon, Shattuck and the boy were meeting in real life. Shattuck would pick him up from summer school and drive to a parking lot where the two would make out in the back seat, according to the affidavits.
On Labor Day weekend, the teenager accompanied Shattuck, her three children, and several of their friends to Bethany beach. It was there that Shattuck allegedly shared wine with the boy, took the older kids on a 2 a.m. beer run and bought them 12-packs of Miller Lite and Bud Light.
Once back at the house, Shattuck allegedly asked the boy to help walk her dog and performed oral sex on him outside, according to a report on the affidavit from the Baltimore Sun. The boy went upstairs and drank with the rest of the group, but after some time, Shattuck came to the roof saying he “needs to go to bed."
She then took the boy into her room where she undressed, performed oral sex on the boy and offered to have sex with him, according to the affidavit. Instead, the boy left and didn’t return. His father picked him up in the morning.
The alleged victim or his parents notified local police about the relationship and on October 1, state police executed a search warrant on Shattuck $2.5 million home.
On her website, currently down “for maintenance” but available through archives, Molly Shattuck sells water bottles and exercise DVDs under the aspirational brand, “Vibrant Living.” In January she released a book with the same title. Inside, readers are treated to photos of Shattuck in various states of exercise and hydration interspersed with recipes and exercise plans, as well as advice on how to “follow your dreams.”
She promises her 21-day plan can help you, “Transform your Body, Burst with Energy, and Live Your Life with Purpose.” She promoted the book on Inside Edition and posed with her sons for the cover of Faith and Fitness Magazine, a bi-monthly print publication that reports on the connection between Christianity and physical fitness. “Just like the water Molly Shattuck encourages her readers to drink, Jesus reveals that He is the living water,” the magazine’s “Character Department Editor,” Kimberly Bloom, writes.
The Internet overflows with this kind of puffery on Shattuck’s life and accomplishments. In Baltimore Magazine’s 2011 piece, titled “The Unsinkable Molly Shattuck,” readers learned that she was raised in a modest home by parents who stressed the importance of hard work to her and her two sisters. The subtext and often-actual texts explaining the lessons of her simple upbringing—one where kids played in the creek and Shattuck worked at the family gas station—supposedly distinguished her from other trophy wives.
This desire to be different—Shattuck told The Baltimore Sun in 2005 that she wasn’t like the hometown girls that got married early: “I knew I was going to see the world”—could be partly behind Shattuck’s obsession on writing down her goals in elaborate to-do lists.
“The roadmap you make for your life helps you stay away from the dark side,” she wrote in a July blog post on resisting temptation.
It was on a hike to the Grand Canyon at age 18 that Shattuck penned her first bucket list. She would: go to college (check); visit Washington DC (check); become a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader (Baltimore Ravens works); run a marathon (check); climb Mt. Kilimanjaro (check!); become a Rockette (At 5’4, it’s not likely); get married and have kids (check); visit Europe (check); save $50,000 (check plus); and help an orphanage (half-check: She appeared on ABC’s reality show Secret Millionaire, and wrote an almost hundred thousand dollar check to help a mom who takes in foster kids)
Sometime in the early ‘90s, Molly George met her husband-to-be while working as a marketing assistant for the investment bank, Alex. Brown & Sons, where Mayo Shattuck was president. Though the math gets a little fuzzy from here, Mayo Shattuck divorced his wife of almost 20 years, Jennifer, in 1995. Molly became Mrs. Shattuck in 1997. They soon had three children, spaced, perfectly, about two years apart. Shattuck suffered multiple miscarriages during that time, and when their youngest was born premature, Molly Shattuck said in interviews that she decided to stop having children.
At first, she seemed content to be an overachieving stay-at-home mom. According to Abigail Tucker writing in the Baltimore Sun in 2005, Shattuck became “one of Martha Stewart's sexier disciples,” baking bread, and constructing elaborate yet healthy dinners each night. “In the summer she organizes ‘Shattuck Family Summer Camp’ - a daily slate of nature walks and art projects for the children - and, after putting them to bed, heads upstairs to her own craft room to glue-gun flower wreaths and trim lampshades, or out back to her gym for a multi-hour workout.”
Then, after weaning her last child, she wanted something more, so back to her list she turned. It was a last-minute decision to try out for the Baltimore Ravens’ cheerleading team. Her husband was supportive and even took the photos to submit with her application. (Later a 50-year-old Mayo Shattuck would crow to People magazine, “Suddenly I'm married to an NFL Cheerleader! How good is that?")
So, Mrs. Shattuck printed out a cheer resume on purple paper and, as is her way, bedazzled the paper with rhinestones.
So it was that in 2005 Shattuck made NFL history by winning a spot on the Baltimore Ravens’ cheerleading team. At 38, she was the oldest woman to ever cheer for the league with 8 years to spare. Any presumptions that she had made the team because of her husband were quickly dismissed after watching her perform.
Teammates described her energy as unstoppable. While the other cheerleaders approached exhausted collapse at the end of a game, Molly Shattuck was “still jumping up and down, going nuts,” another cheerleader told Sports Illustrated. “I'm like 'Molly, what are you on?'" she said.
On cheering, Shattuck told People magazine in 2005 the sport was really just “an extension of motherhood," and said the other women called her “Mama Molly.”
“Not because I'm a big old mom but because there is a nurturing side of me. I think there's always room to love more."
Shattuck retired her pom-poms after two years, but stayed on for six more as a coach.
Molly and Mayo Shattuck filed for divorce on September 29th, according to court records, two days before detectives searched her home for evidence. “As to not compromise the integrity of the investigation,” state police say they will not yet release details on just what was seized. According to WBAL, investigators were looking for a cell phone and pink underwear that had been described by the victim.
As for her bucket list, Shattuck adds to it each New Year. As of April, Shattuck says she has stockpiled 50 dreams. Going to law school is among them.