Obscenity Charges Against Passion Parties Peddler Dropped

Ed Palomar
CLEBURNE, Texas - A Texas judge has dropped obscenity charges against Joanne Webb, the housewife who was arrested Nov. 13 in an undercover police sting operation for selling sex toys.

Two Johnson County police officers posing as a couple had purchased two dildos from Webb at her husband’s office in Burleson, located near Ft. Worth. Afterwards, Webb was busted and charged with violating Texas’ obscure anti-obscenity law, which bans devices meant to stimulate genitalia.

Johnson County attorney Bill Moore recently asked the judge to drop the charges against Webb in order to avoid wasting county resources. Accordingly, the judge dismissed the case, although the exact date of the dismissal has not been made public.

Webb is a mom, former grammar school teacher and a Passion Parties Inc. consultant host. Her job is to present Tupperware-type parties featuring adult novelty products. Passion Parties is a 10-year-old company based in Brisbane, Calif., with 3,000 sex toy sellers who stage home parties throughout North America.

Webb’s case gained national attention. She is reportedly the first Passion Parties host to have been arrested for obscenity. According to Marlene Janssen, director of business development for 4-year-old Temptations Parties, none of her distributors have ever been charged with obscenity.

Janssen told XBiz, “We’re very happy the charges were dropped. It’s very indicative of the state’s embarrassment.”

Janssen went on to praise Webb as “an excellent representative for the industry and anybody who does home parties. She will go down in history in a good light. I wish she worked for us,” said Janssen, whose firm is part of PHE Inc. and a sister company to Adam & Eve.

Convergence Inc. President David Levine, who owns 9-year-old sextoy.com and is one of the largest adult product affiliate programs, said that the issue of what defines community standards has become a problem for his company.

“How can I keep track of the different community standards in various jurisdictions? Levine asked XBiz. "I ship sex toys all over the world. Should I send them to South Korea? If a town has a censorship history, we won’t ship back to those towns,”

Webb’s attorney, BeAnn Sisemore, has filed a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Texas’ obscenity law.

“More power to them,” Janssen said. “It’s time the government got their noses out of our bedrooms.”