Lunsford Fighting Off Revenge Porn

Albemarle County Commonwealth Attorney Denise Lunsford has filed a request with a Missouri court for an ex parte order of protection against a prominent attorney, who posted “nude and semi nude photos” of her to Twitter. The attorney, David Cosgrove, dated Lunsford when they were law students together 25 years ago. Lunsford, who is not married, started dating Cosgrove again last year, but broke it off to return to her long-time partner. In a response to Lunsford’s court filing, Cosgrove confessed to posting the images, but claimed that she “knowingly and voluntarily gave or allowed Mr. Cosgrove to take the images.” (Lunsford says that she didn’t know that most of the photos had been taken.) Last month, in an e-mail to Lunsford, Cosgrove confessed to “doing you harm” and that “I deeply regret my hazy and crazy actions.” Lunsford says that Cosgrove became angry when she broke up with him, which is when he started posting the images, in which he identified her by name; Cosgrove says, in his apparent defense, that he’s an alcoholic. The Daily Progress and NBC-29 both have stories about this.

There’s a large, growing world of so-called “revenge porn” on the internet, with several websites dedicated to letting men share private images of their exes to humiliate them. Just today the New York Times published a long story about efforts to enact state and federal legislation to outlaw this practice. What once would have been a couple of Polaroids reclaimed at the end of a relationship are now impossible to ever remove from somebody else’s possession with any degree of confidence.

Where things get weird is with CBS-19’s story. According to CBS-19, Cosgrove is now alleging that Lunsford is just trying to silence him, so that he can’t tell people that she “watch a movie in her home with her child present” (CBS-19’s words), and that disgraced—and wanted—former Board of Supervisors member Chris Dumler was present as well. Why in the world a woman can’t watch a movie in her own home, I have no idea, but perhaps CBS-19 will clear that up. (Note that there appears to be nothing about an an ex parte order of protection that would have prevented Cosgrove from making such allegations, although I’m not an attorney.) Given that Cosgrove has confessed to posting revenge porn of Lunsford, sharing images that may well be 25 years old, it’s difficult to give him the benefit of the doubt with this new claim.

10 Responses to “Lunsford Fighting Off Revenge Porn”


  • The more I think about this, the more I think this Cosgrove guy is just a horrible asshole. He posted those photos of her because he wanted to humiliate her. She fought back and made his confessional e-mails public via a court filing, so what does he do? He claims (if I can extrapolate a bit here) that she was watching porn with Chris Dumler with her kid present. Surely Cosgrove knows all about the Dumler matter, since obviously that was an important thing that she had to deal with over the past year. If he’s actually lying about this—if he’s seriously making up a claim of child endangerment tied into pornography in order to potentially have her child taken away from her, which he wells knows could be the outcome, as an attorney—then Cosgrove is a monster.

    If Cosgrove wanted to reveal impropriety on Lunsford’s part, the time to do that was before he posted nude photos of her, not after. It still would have been suspicious, coming from a jilted, alcoholic ex-lover, but there would have been a chance of credibility. But now?

    Christ, what an asshole.

  • It’s disturbing that Lunsford appears unaware the public expects elected officials to keep better company than this.

  • I find it more disturbing that someone would hold Lunsford accountable (“expects … officials to keep better company”) for how Cosgrove turned out 25 years after she was seriously involved with him at law school. People can change a lot over that amount of time, and I would guess from this story that the ways in which he has changed are why she dumped him when they reunited last year.

  • This is why the English language needs words such as “cad” and “bounder”.

  • 1) “with several websites dedicated to letting men share private images of their exes” Yeah its not just men. I wont offer links, but this trend is gender and gender preference independent.

    2) ” …Lunsford appears unaware the public expects…” Way to blame the victim.

    3) Time for everyone involved to google “The Barbara Streisand Effect”

    4) “Christ, what an asshole.” Ah! So what’s your fark handle Waldo?

  • “with several websites dedicated to letting men share private images of their exes” Yeah its not just men. I wont offer links, but this trend is gender and gender preference independent.

    It is overwhelmingly images of females.

    “Christ, what an asshole.” Ah! So what’s your fark handle Waldo?

    Actually, that doesn’t originate with Fark. (I haven’t used Fark since about 2004. I have no idea what my handle is there!) It originates with modernarthur.com, whose proprietor accurately determined that any New Yorker caption contest cartoon could be captioned as such, and that it would work perfectly. In response, the magazine improved their selection of cartoons quite a bit.

  • It’s disturbing that Lunsford appears unaware the public expects elected officials to keep better company than this.

    The former Missouri Commissioner of Securities, Chief Legal Counsel for the Office of the Governor, Chief Counsel for the Missouri Attorney General’s Office’s Consumer Protection Division? That’s the company that she should know better than to keep? Do you think he checked off “into revenge porn” on his OK Cupid profile?

  • Christ, what an awesome bit of history. Thanks!

  • Yeah, like anyone really believes she was watching porn with two guys and her kid. When you hear something that over the top, the credibility stops.

    Also, guys are males and like seeing naked girls. Girls are females and often programmed both socially and genetically to make peace and happiness (unless, as any husband can attest…you screw up….) and may give in to the blandishments of an innocent Polaroid. And then dumped guy becomes a douche.

    Kudos for Lunsford standing up tall and strong into the light, despite the shadow it may cast. Chicks like that will go a long way to holding dipshit dudes a bit more to the correct.

    What happens behind the closed doors of a consensual relationship, need to stay there.

  • What happens behind the closed doors of a consensual relationship, need to stay there.

    This. Yes. Very much this.

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