By:Ned Roberts, WTSP Channel 10 – Tampa Bay, FL
Pasco County, Florida – Fifteen Pasco County nude dancers have dates in court after a lunch-time roundup.
Lt. Robert Sullivan, Pasco County Sheriff’s Office:
”Historically we’ve done these things late at night, but our intelligence indicated that they were quite busy around the lunch hour and that a lot was occurring.”
Undercover deputies made the arrests at five strip clubs along U.S. 19. The women were arrested on various charges including solicitation of a beverage, exposure of a sexual organ, and prostitution.
They are the first strip club arrests since April of 2003 when a Pasco judge tossed out charges against ten dancers because Florida law didn’t allow an undercover deputy to be the so-called “offended party.” That all changed this year with a new law supported by Pasco legislators and signed by Gov. Jeb Bush.
Lt. Robert Sullivan:
”With this new law, it opened the door for me to send undercover officers back in to investigate, and see if the law is being violated.”
Before arresting the women Thursday, the undercover deputies watched nude dancers on stage, bought some of them drinks, and received lap dances from others.
Ned Roberts, Tampa Bay’s 10 News
If there is one thing I admire in a government officials, it’s their willingness to do what it takes to bust criminals. Florida Governor Jeb Bush, rather than bouncing around helplessly, decided to take matters into his own hands. Even the Pasco County Sherriff’s department is willing to look long and hard into lap dances to make sure these ordinances are left sagging.
I just hope the legislation doesn’t go overboard and make exposure to a HAMMOND organ illegal. I also hope that Lt. Robert Sullivan doesn’t file a Workman’s Comp Claim because of the long hours of investigating. After all that sitting, I’d probably be stiff, too.