Not sure how many of you follow the comments, but recently Lailah commented on a couple of my posts about her arrest. I encouraged her to write her story down to share with the general public over at Bound, not Gagged. I’m very proud to say that she did.

For anyone who is curious about what an arrest feels like to a consenting adult sex worker, please read her well-written story. She’s doing very well for such a recent shock. I like intelligent, angry, uppity women. Feel free to comment there to offer her support. And do question if you feel your tax dollars are really working to keep you safe at night.

36 thoughts on “an arrest story

  1. Great story. What a bunch of Assholes. I can not believe people are treated like that. I am filled with rage and sympathy all directed at the cops. I think Lailah is the only one in that story that has ANY idea of what life is about. I am yet again stunned at mans inhumanity to fellow man………… Thank you all for being so strong and standing up for what you believe in and what is right.

  2. Read the story and was extremely appauled that Lailah should have to tolerate such treatment. It was inspiring to see the wave of support she has.

  3. To all who commented over BnG in support of Lailah — THANK YOU!!! Maybe I’m actually NOT just talking to myself here 🙂

    To all those who are appalled: her story is actually not out of the ordinary. This is fairly standard treatment. She expressed herself well and I’m glad she was willing to give the inside view.

    My flatmate,

    Yup, welcome to the effect of the policies of the good ol USA. You Aussies are generally a bit more sensible about things. Not perfect, but maybe a little further along in allowing people to live their lives.

    BellaDonna,

    It IS inspiring to see the support she has gotten. I’m sure it helps her out right now to know she isn’t alone. I’m hoping other girls who have been arrested can see there are people who care — even if they don’t even know each other.

    XX

  4. Y’all are great. It was so good to see the level of support over at BnG. It does help a lot.

    As of now no charges have been filed (and I hope that means there’s no case). I had a court date for a misdemeanor charge on the 21st but I wasn’t in the court system. I hope that’s good news.

    Amanda, thanks for posting that for me. And for encouraging me to write it down. The act of writing helped me deal with a lot of the anger. I hope it helps others.

    xoxo
    Lailah

  5. Lailah,

    My fingers are crossed for you.

    You’re welcome. I can’t even begin to tell you how I’m impressed I am that you’re holding yourself together so well so soon after your arrest. I think your story is going to offer a lot of strength to others who need it.

    Thank you for telling it.

    XX

  6. I say, no harm, no foul. It works in basketball and should be applied to the law. There are plenty of people causing actual harm who should be the focus of law enforcement. I have yet to see anyone harmed from a blowjob!

  7. Just as it took a Republican President, Richard Nixon, to open dialog with China, it might just take a Republican with Big Balls to say enough is enough and begin the process of making both Prostitution and Marijuana use a non crime. Would that be good for the country? I honestly do not know, but imho, anyone politically strong enough to initiate a genuine conversation about the legalization of both, without all the wingnuts clouding the real issues, could be a good thing. No Democrat President and/or a Democrat controlled Congress, who are concerned about reelection, would be able to bring about a realistic conversation. BTW, I am an registered Independent and vote to kick the incumbent out, regardless of Party, in every election whether local, state or national.

  8. David,

    It seems like a logical argument but there are lots of people who feel there is all sorts of harm caused by what two adults do behind closed doors. Sigh.

    Benjamin,

    In all honesty, both parties have major issues with prostitution. Republicans just see it as immoral and want to stamp it out. Democrats like to tie together sex trafficking (i.e. all sex workers victims) and women’s rights to stamp out prostitution. The end result is the same. It would take a TRULY independent party to change things.

    Lailah,

    Or a girl!

    XX

  9. If the government can’t regulate consenting adults having sex for free, or Disneyland dating,how do they make the leap to regulating escorting? Oh wait, I forget they don’t have to be logical.

  10. I read the story and just have to say. The lady did some very stupid things. Why would SHE DISCUSS PRICES with the gent doesn’t she have a website. Isn’t this what an escort site is for? She said something like “even if he told me he was a cop, i wouldn’t care I’ve fucked cops and CIA agents” Is she stupid? A cop doesn’t give a rats ass if you’ve fucked a cop before.. YOU SHOULD RUN IF HE TELLS YOU HE’S A COP!

    The whole story about working for an agency a few days before jus sounded shady to me. Oh and giving a whole disclaimer before the state is setting yourself up big time. WHO DOES THAT? Sorry Ma’am you weren’t so bright If you would have shut the hell up and kept your ears and eyes peeled instead of answering vulgar questions you wouldn’t have gotten busted. YOU did some pretty stupid things.

  11. Oh and just FYI, I’ve walked into two stings and have never gotten busted. Because I knew what to say and what not to say. I haven’t been in this business 10 years and I don’t plan to be. I work smart and you should to. You put yourself in that situation. It’s mind boggling that you actually gave him a full disclaimer. You’re an escort not a hooker. You sell time , not sex.. he doesn’t need you to tell him that. HE SHOULD ALREADY KNOW THAT. I don’t even discuss prices via email before the date. I mean.. I just can’t get over how naive you were.

  12. Kayla, perhaps Laila said the “wrong” things, but on the other hand, if sex work was decriminalized like it should be, none of this would have happened in the first place.

    And, furthermore, what business did the cops have in wearing a ski mask? Since when do cops wear ski masks? Probably when they are terrorizing someone into full disclosure.

  13. David,

    No, none of this is logical. At all. You got it!

    Kayla,

    Don’t victim-blame. You are not her lawyer. I’m surprised you were not arrested — my understanding is that if you’re in a room with a cop, you’re getting arrested because it doesn’t matter what you do or do not do (arrest is different from conviction). Further, if you really want to blame Lailah, why not do it over at her story?

    I would love to know if you’ve conducted your ENTIRE life in a completely smart and above-board manner. Or if you’re human and make mistakes too. Do let me know how flawless you think you are.

    One thing I think both you and Lailah illustrate is what Dolores French said years ago: “Prostitution is a crime of words.” It quite obviously is. Interesting that a job so many think creates victims apparently creates them all out of words (since that’s where the illegality lies).

    Susan,

    Indeed. If the laws were different, there would be no need for cat and mouse games or wasting everyone’s time/money.

    And it would give other sex workers one less thing to bash each other with.

    XX

  14. Amanda,

    At the time I worked for an agency luckily for me I had already done my RESEARCH on this business 6 months prior to jumping in. IF POLICE WANTS YOU THEY WILL ARREST YOU! I did not get arrested because I knew what to say and not to say like I mentioned before. Oh and I also didn’t engage in sexual acts with any of the policeman nor did I agree to any sexual acts for money like Laliah did. When he started asking me about sexual acts something clicked and I remembered an article I read on another site about playing dumb but not provoking the police and it worked. They let me go. I didn’t discuss sex or prices because that has nothing to do with me.. I never arranged the date, the agency did.

    What is that nonsense about me not being her lawyer? If she didn’t run her mouth so much she wouldn’t have needed one. I think we all need to work smart and THINK before each date. I am very cautious. Now that I’m an independent I am EXTRA cautious.

    LOL sure I’ve made some mistakes Miss Brooks but they never got me arrested. I am in my mid-20s, drug and disease free. The biggest mistake I’ve made was not getting started in this business sooner.
    You can twist my words if you want to Amanda but I do believe that her arrest could have been avoided by simply shutting up. This business is not for everyone and I learned that from you.

    Yes I’m a big fan. I have both of your books and I love them. I’m appalled however that you would sugarcoat such stupidity.. Oh well.. That’s all I have to say. Good day.

  15. Wow.. you call it “bashing”.. Seriously sorry for commenting on your blog. I guess you know it all and whatever you say goes.

  16. Amanda,

    Much credit to you and Lailah for putting this story out there. It was well written and vivid, and it is a very accurate example of what happens and how during these police assaults. Lailah is lucky only in that the local news crews were not in tow. Your comment that this is not unique is spot on. This kind of outrageous injustice happens to some woman in America (and usually several) every single day.

    I think that political parties are the driven, not the drivers. Change will be the fruit of an effort to educate people and break down the wall of mis-cast stereotypes and false propaganda about sex work and its role in and impact on society.

    Your line about live and let live in Australia is interesting. Since the very first English settlers came to New England there has been a sharp divide between those who see our country as a place where everyone should have the freedom to think as they choose and those who see it as a place where they can mold their conception of a perfect society, non-conformers be damned (literally). To me, it is obvious which is practical and just and which is not, but it will probably not change anytime soon.

    Kayla,

    To insult over others’ mistakes really says more about you then about anyone else. Some of the points you make are valid and some are very doubtful, but your classless, sniping tone makes it much more difficult to have a productive discussion about some of the very real, practical issues you yourself raised. It is very presumptuous to declare your assurance of what would or wouldn’t have gotten Lailah arrested when you haven’t seen her ads and know little of her conversation with the cops or the course of their invetigation. It sounds like you may have been aided yourself by the stupidity of the cops you met. So many legal things turn on a very fine line or on the whims of the police. Placing your safety in fallacious distinctions between what is said on a website and what in conversation is playing a dangerous game.

    (For anyone looking for legal information and how to deal with the police, the SCAPA – Las Vegas website has a legal guide that is a very good place to start.)

    Lailah,

    Even if your name is not posted outside the courtrooms or on a court website (every state has their own ways), you can always call the clerk’s office of the court you were cited in to be sure. Good luck to you.

  17. Kayla,

    You’re very very lucky. Very glad you did your research before going into this but you were lucky. You’re the first woman I’ve ever spoken to who KNEW she was in the room with cops and did NOT get arrested.

    You were bashing Lailah. Kicking her while she’s down. You could have easily said exactly the same thing you did say in a more constructive and supportive way. Instead you attacked her and basically called her stupid. She’s someone who has just gone through trauma you have not. Show a little compassion while proving your point of just how smart you are.

    Speaking of stupid, a website disclaimer does not matter. It only matters in issues of age-appropriate Internet surfing. It does not save you from prostitution arrests.

    Lee,

    Thank you, and thank you. 🙂

    Oh, and SCAPA thanks you too!

    XX

  18. Dear Amanda

    all credit to you for giving Lailah a voice to share her awful experiences. I think what matters most is for people like Lailah to be able to come forward and speak up without fear of judgement. If we are to succeed, we – sex workers and their friends and allies – must support each other and provide comfort, affirmation and help. They will never crush sex workers if they stick together and speak up as human beings with basic civil rights.

    We have a dream – Yes we can!
    best wishes
    Michael

  19. NEVER EVER EVER talk to the police

    Not knowing the rules regarding posting links,
    here’s a bit of info copied from a page which has
    two videos(not the only source, but the quickest find)
    regarding legal views about speaking with the police.

    In a brilliant pair of videos, , Prof. James Duane of the Regent University School of Law and Officer George Bruch of the Virginia Beach Police Department present a forceful case for never, ever, ever speaking to the police without your lawyer present. Ever. Never, never, never.

  20. Lailah,

    You have my sympathies for what you went through and my respect for being able to talk about it.

    I have also had the police show up at my door and it’s an indescribable experience. I think the only way anyone gets good at doing it is through experience and research. I know I’m much better about dealing with them now than I was a year ago.

    The more I deal with the police the more mystified that I become in regards to how much they lie. It seems to be a habit with the ones I’ve dealt with. They’ll lie effortlessly and needlessly. Even at times when they are getting full cooperation they often lie.

    A former judge once told me that people can’t win in a court of law. The second you walk into the courtroom you’ve already lost something. I think cops play on that fact and engage in a game of chicken with over peoples rights, they often give off a “Sure you have the right to do that but if you assert it I’ll take you to jail/court” vibe.

    Hopefully you’ll get through this with no charges officially filed and in the future laws can be changed to keep this from happening.

  21. What a horrible and frightening experience. I’m from the Uk and I never do quite get it why cops in the US have to make the biggest deal and biggest drama about nothing. All it would have taken was one or two discreetly dressed cops to knock on your door, not 10 of them some in ski masks! For gawds sake. They are a complete joke.
    And as for contacting your employer/business partner, that’s just plain vindictive, and unnecessary. Yea why not let you lose your job, partner etc… so you then have to work full time as an escort! That’s really going to solve their ‘problem’. Idiots.
    I really hope Lailah that you manage to get over this trauma without it causing any more upset in your life. I hope you can learn something from this to avoid anything similar happening again.

  22. Wow! I just wanted to let everyone know that it was lovely to see the out pouring of support for Lailah. I was detained myself recently and it was a traumatizing experience. I am 35 and have never been in any trouble. I hired a lawyer and the nasty charge was dismissed, but I had to plead guilty to massaging without a license and I have a year of probation. I really massaging though, it did all the things for me that escorting did for Lailah.

    Lailah,
    Good luck to you. Keep our chin up. You will be stronger for this experience.

    You are all right, Kayla you might not be so harsh if you had gone through the experience yourself. You could have taken the opportunity to help a sister in the community instead of “kicking” her while she was down.

    Amanda,
    I have both your books. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience. I am still working on the second one. Thank you for this wonderful space people to come together an share thoughts and ideas.

    Rebecca Dakin! I just finished your book a few weeks ago. I really enjoyed it and it gave me some great ideas about my next business venture. I have been meaning to email you. So nice to know that you are around as a resource.

    Peace and Blessings,
    Irie

  23. Irie,

    Thanks for coming over here! And thanks for being a reader!

    BTW, did you see Lailah’s story on Bound not Gagged too? She got a lot of support there too and has given an update.

    XX

  24. I’m a libertarian who is pro-legalization and a regular client of sex workers, so I obviously sympathize with Lailah and am sorry that she had to be subjected to the shame, stress, and legal nightmare that she described for us so well. Sex workers are the new witches. Puritans, bible-thumpers, and feminists, all hypocrites with sick motives, influence lawmakers and politicians to fund those law enforcement operations.
    We all agree that a minority’s “morals” are unfairly shoved down our throats and interfering with our right, as consenting adults, to do as we please behind closed doors. It should stop ASAP, and making stories like Lailah’s heard is a good step toward reaching that goal. Call me a pessimist, but I’m not expecting too much change in my lifetime, however.

    THIS BEING SAID… I’m also pro-LE and want to clarify a few things. The anger here is justified, but misdirected. We are blaming the messengers. Are some cops enjoying the spoils of the hunt (barging into bedrooms while dressed for war and shaming harmless naked folks, Spanish Inquisition-style) or the services of sex workers themselves? Of course: they’re people too and have their bad apples. But that’s not my point here.

    US soldiers and cops are often derided from overseas as over-equipped cowards and cowboys. I understand the perception, but it’s wrong. Australia and the UK have largely disarmed their populations (well, the law-abiding ones anyway), while firearms are everywhere in the US (as they should be!). Cops get paid to know this and plan missions accordingly. They get ambushed and killed on a regular basis while doing such brutal things as enjoying breakfast at a Seattle coffee shop or pulling someone over for a broken tail light. They just want to get to the end of their shift, you know? If ballistic gear and guns drawn are what it takes, that’s what they use. There’s few people more pragmatic than an American cop.

    The “ninja” or “jack-booted thug” look used in many APPARENTLY low-risk ops is also completely misunderstood. It’s been proven again and again that SWAT units, unlike regular ones, get instant submission in the majority of their “contacts”. The reason? Shock & awe (if it sounds familiar, it should). Their appearance and tactics are specifically designed to instill fear and confusion. Excessive? Well, when no one ends up firing a shot, I don’t think they care what we think. Overwhelming the suspects is also done for their safety, believe it or not. Cops get sued and jailed for shooting people, not giving them nightmares.

    So we say, “Oh, but the poor woman was alone and unarmed”. True in Lailah’s case, but cops have no way of knowing this, or that she’s not on hard drugs or hiding accomplices (see their questions to that effect). Even one single injury (that a woman is very capable of inflicting or sustaining during arrest) is unacceptable. We watch a car chase on TV and scoff, thinking of the Blues Brothers or the Keystone Kops. But EVERY ONE of the cruisers involved has a specific role, including that of a witness.
    When I lived in Europe, I saw cops operate very differently, yes. Much smaller budgets and “productions”. I also saw them enjoy a system that did NOT offer citizens the same level of protection, and sweep under the carpet all the stuff that US cops wouldn’t dream of getting away with. They’re not more reasonable or more human – same assholes, less accountability. Going it alone or unprepared, or paying Mr. Nice Policeman is called complacency around here. I know it’s hard to see unless you’ve walked in those shoes.

    And why would someone wear a mask? Does this really need explaining? Un-der-co-ver. The man knows that people he comes in contact with will be out on bail or released shortly, and giving his description to their accomplices. There could be a hidden camera somewhere, for all he knows. He doesn’t show his face to protect the integrity of future investigations and his own LIFE.

    The only way to make all this stop is not to tell the cops to take more chances or pull back. It’s to influence public opinion, and eventually change the LAW. Only then will cops be able to focus on more important matters. As it is, they just do as told and believe what their bosses tell them.
    And tell me, if even sex workers themselves buy the “victim” and “trafficking” cover stories that justify the war on sex crusade for the unsuspecting public… how can you blame cops?

    This “happy ending” masseuse proclaims that full service sex workers are drug-addicted and diseased skanks, and immigrant ones slaves to the mob: http://happyendingz.blogspot.com/2008/06/boycott-asian-massage-parlors.html

    This former escort suggests that clients she had sex with for money were actually committing rape: http://beinganescort.blogspot.com/2008/03/what-its-really-like.html
    http://beinganescort.blogspot.com/2008/04/my-first-time.html

    And this Asian masseuse rants pointlessly against LE and judges, but refuses to see that some have to speak out in order for things to change: http://www.cuntlet.com/are-you-ready-to-judge-me.html

    [Sorry about the long tirade, but this is not the ’60s anymore. Shouting “Death to all pigs!” and sniping at each other is not constructive.]

  25. Hobbyist,

    This is where you and I part ways.

    Cops knowingly use ridiculously excessive force against single women alone in hotel rooms. Since these are stings, the rooms are being surveyed and the cops know full well if she’s alone and just how alone she is. They quite obviously get their jollies from terrorizing semi-naked women. That’s not upholding the law, that’s wrong. You won’t ever convince me to feel sorry for the poor, unprotected vice officer ruining the life of a woman who is trying to pay her bills.

    We all know that vice does sweeps in response to political pressure. Mostly. A friend of mine did some digging in numbers in Las Vegas. In 2008 they made 5000 prostitution-related arrests on the Strip. The number alone is staggering, but then compare it to 15,000 unsolved violent crimes in Vegas that same year: assault, robbery, rape, homicide. The time/money/manpower vice gets could surely be put to better use for all citizens of Las Vegas.

    Yes there are sex workers who internalize the shame/stigma. Doesn’t mean there is no need for the laws to change. It doesn’t mean cops don’t regularly abuse their power. In fact, that abuse of power is so prevalent in America that it’s scaring non-sex workers now.

    I’m sure there are a handful of stories out there where cops got in a shootout with a pimp while arresting a sex worker. I haven’t stumbled across any yet. But there are PLENTY of stories of sex workers assaulted, raped, traumatized by an overwhelming show of force during their arrest. Seems to me that the people needing protection are not the ones in SWAT gear with guns.

    XX

  26. Well, I can’t say I didn’t know that this would go over about as well as telling the gazelle that the lion has to eat, too, or why scary predators hunt in packs against herbivores and their young… lol

    I don’t want to hijack this blog further, so I’ll leave it to what I stated. I read it again to make sure I hadn’t gone overboard, and don’t think I did.

    Although not in LE, I have an insider’s point of view (and I’ll leave this alone here, too), and understand that it’s at odds with that of a preoccupyingly large portion of the public, never mind overseas.

    And as a hobbyist, please note that I want nothing more than for the law to change and said so. My point was simply that casting stones at its strong arm is a waste of time and a lost fight. Opinion has to change first, and then lawmakers will follow next. Cops will just do as told.

  27. Hobbyist,

    You didn’t go overboard but I’ve heard these arguments before. Likening cops to lions isn’t good either — unless you agree that cops are merely preying on everyone. 😉

    No, the law has to change first. Right now, the law is such that it is arbitrarily enforced and abused. The law changes, these things thing. I’ve seen it in other countries. The public opinion follows the law. Make someone not a “criminal” anymore and suddenly there’s a lot more respect, tolerance and protection all the way around. Other countries have managed this, why can’t America?

    Start working your way through Norma Jean Almodovar’s site. Her book, if you can find it, is a great read, BTW.

    XX

  28. Great story. Ladies need to be informed! Thank you!

    Quick note – Amanda, I have been in situations where I knew I was in the room with a cop and did not get arrested. I’ve also been in that situation and did get arrested. LOL. It’s sort of a trial and error thing, speaking from twelve years experience in the business.

    Kayla – Getting busted can happen to anyone. I’m fairly intelligent, have years of experience, am well versed on the law, and am constantly seeking further knowledge. Yet I could get busted tomorrow. Just when you think it can’t happen to you is exactly when it will. If I were you I would watch my arrogance. Just a thought.

    Kelly James

  29. Kelly,

    Generally though, being in the room with a cop means you will be arrested. It’s not a game of chance I’m willing to play. I consider it akin to always behaving as if a gun is loaded (gun-safety rule #1).

    XX

  30. By way of update – I got VERY lucky. There was not enough evidence for them to prosecute. No charges were filed. I’ve stayed out of the business.

    At least—for now.

  31. Lailah — Thanks for the update!

    I honestly don’t think they really get enough evidence for court in most cases, generally the arrest is enough to ruin the life of their victim.

    Hope your life is back to normal and you’re doing okay emotionally.

    XX

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