Eric Leven

Action Alert: Stop the Arrests!

Filed By Eric Leven | February 13, 2009 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Action Alerts
Tags: Michael Bloomberg, New York City, prostitution, stop the arrests

This just in:

Join us on the picket line at the Mayor's private residence for a legal and peaceful constitutionally-protected protest. As with any political event these days, there is always some risk that the police will violate our rights. Legal observers will be on site; no arrests are expected.

Tell Mayor Bloomberg to Stop the False Arrests of Gay Men for Prostitution

DEMONSTRATE at the home of Michael Bloomberg
17 East 79th Street
Saturday, February 14, 2009
12 Noon - 1 PM

In an overzealous and illegal effort to close down adult video stores in Manhattan, the New York Police Department has been found to be engaging in the false arrests of gay male patrons of these stores, charging them with prostitution. The cops then cite the establishments for condoning illegal activity and the City sues to shut them down as public nuisances.

Scores of innocent men have been swept up in these false arrests, documented in the Gay City News. Young undercover cops go up to middle-aged gay men, cruise them, ask for consensual sex, and then offer to pay the older men to have sex with them. Though none of the men agree to the offer, they are then arrested by a gang of undercover cops and put through the system. None of the men have prior arrests. And while only 17% of male prostitutes arrested in NYPD's Manhattan South district are over 40 years old, 66% of the men arrested at the Blue Door video store are. The legitimacy of these arrests is inconceivable. It also casts doubt on arrests at other targeted stores.

These false arrests have been condemned by City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Council Member Rosie Mendez and State Senator Tom Duane. Mayor Bloomberg must put a stop to these arrests now and bring the rogue cops engaging in these crimes to justice.

1. MAYOR BLOOMBERG - Stop the false arrests of gay men for prostitution!
2. GOVERNOR PATERSON - Appoint a special prosecutor to investigate and punish these crimes by the police!
3. MAYOR BLOOMBERG, D.A. MORGENTHAU and POLICE COMMISSIONER KELLY - Sit down with gay groups, leaders and victims of these illegal stings, to get to the bottom of this outrage, and stop the arrests and prosecutions -NOW!


Sponsored by the Coalition to Stop the Arrests & Queer Justice League

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I'll certainly be at Bloomberg's house protesting these outrageous false arrests. But let's show some love to the 83% of male prostitutes who are under the age of 40, and for all the men and women arrested for prostitution, including those who are guilty as charged. WHose interests are served by these arrests? I've read that New York spends $20 million annually controlling prostitution--ridiculous. Shut down the Vice Squad. Keep New York sexy.

Be sure to tell us how it goes today, Eric!


What's the background for this outrageous bigotry? Are the cops on a campaign against adult bookstores? Is the archdiocese on their case?

Or is this just another example of the generalized homophobia that permeates most local governments, including the most 'liberal'?

Are the victims preparing lawsuits because the cops would seem to be very vulnerable on this?