Hawaii Finally Banning Cops From Sex With Prostitutes

Weird loophole closes, but police can still solicit sex to make arrests
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2014 6:30 AM CDT
Updated Mar 26, 2014 6:41 AM CDT
Hawaii Finally Banning Cops From Sex With Prostitutes
A pedestrian walks in front of a Honolulu Police Department station in Honolulu's tourist area of Waikiki on Wednesday, March 19, 2014.   (AP Photo/Oskar Garcia)

Honolulu police have apparently relented: They have agreed to give up the legal exemption that allows them to have sex with prostitutes. State Sen. Clayton Hee tells the AP that he and police came to a compromise in a meeting yesterday: "Sexual penetration" will be a no-no, but police working undercover will still be able to solicit sex with prostitutes, in order to make arrests. A Honolulu police rep says officers have never had their department's blessing to have sex with prostitutes, and that this whole to-do started because the department was just trying to remove a vague clause from an anti-prostitution bill. "I suppose that in retrospect the police probably feel somewhat embarrassed about this whole situation," Hee said.

Hee tells KHON2 that "there are other parts of the exemption that will remain and that includes sexual contact," but that "HPD agrees that the sexual penetration language in the law that they are exempt from should no longer be an exemption for police officers." As to KHON2's assertion that "some people might think sexual contact might include touching some areas of the body that shouldn’t be touched. What would you say to that?” Hee apparently had no reply, with a police official just saying "we have strict policy" that he couldn't go into. And the woman who drafted the initial language change to the exemption expressed surprise: "In all of the versions of the language, never did it exclude their ability to solicit verbally," she notes. (More Hawaii stories.)

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