Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
 / Updated 

The former Seattle school teacher who made headlines around the world in the 1990s after sleeping with — and later marrying — a 12-year-old student was briefly jailed Monday after missing a court appearance in connection with her driving without a license.

Mary Kay Letourneau, 51, was booked into King County Jail early Monday and released at 1:05 p.m. after posting $5,000 bail, law enforcement officials said.

Letourneau became infamous in 1997 after reports of her sexual relationship with Vili Fualaau — at that time one of her pupils — were splashed on tabloid covers across America. 

Mary Kay LeTourneau listens to testimony during a court hearing in Seattle, on Feb. 6, 1998.ALAN BERNER / Pool via AP file

The lurid affair — which started when Letourneau was 34 and Fualaau was 12 — set off a media firestorm. It was later chronicled in tell-all books and a television movie.

Letourneau — pregnant with Fualaau's child — was sentenced to prison in late 1997 after being convicted of rape. She was paroled in January 1998 and barred from contact with her former pupil.

But less than a month later, the two were caught together in her car at 3 a.m. — and Letourneau was sent back to serve the rest of her term seven-year term in prison.

And that's where she bore Fualaau's second child.

Letourneau was released from prison in 2004 — and just a year later, she and Fualaau got hitched. They have two children.

Reuters contributed to this report.