Our client, age 51, was arrested at approximately 5:15 a.m. after picking up a prostitute in his car. Our client was dressed in drag in high heels, a miniskirt and wore heavy makeup. He was a handyman by trade during the day.
In a Nutshell: Hollywood, client arrested off Santa Monica Boulevard, client faces charges of loitering with intent to commit prostitution (Penal Code § 653.22), second-time offense, diversion and dismissal.
Police charged him with loitering for purposes of committing prostitution because earlier in the morning, he was hanging out in his car in the parking lot of a nearby gas station nearby prostitutes. Our client had a fifth-grade education.
This case was somewhat sad for our office to defend, as our client did not appear to really understand the gravity of the consequences for his conduct. He obviously had a limited appreciation for why certain conduct was illegal and how his specific conduct violated the law.
The arrest was tremendously embarrassing for our client and, unfortunately, it was not his first such arrest. Consequently, when he retained Greg Hill & Associates, he was extremely concerned about losing his job and having to serve time in jail.
The client described his conduct, through tears at our office. Greg described what defenses were available and how his prior conviction for solicitation of prostitution outside Los Angeles County, may not appear in his criminal history. In our experience, a client’s prior convictions often do not show up in criminal background records. In this case, we certainly hoped this would be so.
At the arraignment at the Bauchet Street courthouse downtown, the City Attorney handling the case noted what appeared to be a prior record for violating Penal Code 647(f), solicitation of prostitution. Greg felt a lump form in his throat, knowing that the client most likely faced mandatory jail time.
The offer consequently was that in exchange for a “No Contest” plea to a violation of Penal Code § 653.22(a) (a conviction, which would end his employment), our client would receive two years of summary probation, conditioned upon performing fifteen days of community labor (an unpleasant version of community service) and a stay away order from the area of his arrest.
This offer was actually quite lenient, as 30 days of jail is the usual offer in a second-time prostitution case, in our experience.
However, Greg looked closely at the rap sheet of our client and realized that the prior arrest of our client had a typographical error for the birth date of our client, however, the California driver’s license was the same, as well as his height and weight.
Greg brought this to the City Attorney’s attention, who agreed that the prior conviction did not appear to be for our client. The City Attorney did not inspect the record any closer. As such, he offered our client diversion as if he was a first-time offender.
Diversion for such a charge was enrollment in and completion of the Prostitution Diversion Program (PDP), a one day class costing approximately $750. Once our client produced proof of completion of this class, as well as an AIDS test, the case would be dismissed.
Our client was very happy with his lucky break and gladly agreed to diversion, knowing he would be able to keep his job.
For more information about sex offenses and prostitution in specific, click on the following articles:
- What Is Penal Code § 647 (b), Prostitution and Solicitation for Prostitution?
- Appeals Court Affirms LAPD Officer’s Conviction for Solicitation of Prostitution (Penal Code § 647 (b))
- What Convictions Require Registration As a Sex Offender under Penal Code § 290?
Watch our video about sex offenses by clicking here