Anchor Larry Moore hyped the story as an "investigation" just before reporter Martin Augustine revealed that some "adult services" ads in a certain weekly newspaper actually involve prostitution. Accompanying videotape showed hapless johns saying things like "Do you get undressed as well, and all that?" to a professional cock tease (actually, an off-camera policewoman). But it turns out the report from "inside a sex sting" didn't involve much independent investigation: The police and prosecutor "signed off" on all the cases before arrestees' faces were put on TV, says vice officer Victor Zinn.
The moral to Augustine's story? The police are protecting the home lives of Kansas Citians, as explained by a garbled voice coming from an officer's deeply shadowed face. "They're taking money out of their household accounts to do this. They're taking time away from their family to do this. They're putting their family at risk, indirectly, through disease encounters, deception."
But those sound like the sins of ATM customers, workaholics, emergency-room nurses and golfers who sign incorrect scorecards. Cuff 'em all -- them and lap dancers. Not content with answering personal ads for escort services and placing similar ads as bait for johns, the vice squad now is trying to bust those hardworking bar girls who'll squirm on a guy's clothed ... gun.
Where was Augustine on another recent night out, when the vice squad hit the clubs with $20 bills in hand? Had one of the men's Andrew Jacksons been particularly alluring, arrests would have resulted from "the lap dance where the girl is grinding her crotch into a man's crotch," says Zinn. "She's basically dry-humping him." Unfortunately, Zinn says, none of his officers was able to get a five-minute date with the girls of Gala or Legs.
Just as well, since Zinn would have had a hard time pressing his case: Dry-humping doesn't appear in the city's legal definition of prostitution. "It may violate some bar ordinances, but I can't imagine it's prostitution," says city prosecutor Roger Potter.
Who, exactly, would be the victim in a dry humping, anyway? The dry cleaner?