San Diego Police Department’s Ploy to Bypassed Strip Club’s Cover Charge Results in Lawsuit

There are so many excellent jokes that could be made from this article:

Nothing screams “fuck the police” quite as much as a few dozen strippers slapping the San Diego Police Department with a fat lawsuit this month. The suit refers to an incident back in March, when ten police officers—who were armed and wearing raid vests—busted into Cheetahs Gentlemen’s Club in San Diego and allegedly harassed the strippers for nearly two hours. The media has made this out to seem like an isolated incident, but this kind of behavior is pretty standard for the SDPD’s vice unit, which is the law enforcement equivalent of a bunch of party-hungry frat bros.


Brittany Murphy is a dancer at Cheetahs who told me that the police raid left her feeling “creeped out” and “humiliated.” Murphy doesn’t have any tattoos, but the officers insisted on taking photos of her anyway. She was wearing the outfit she wears when she dances: two sheer leotards layered on top of each other.

“The flash was going off, and I’m sure they could see my nipples,” she told me. “I mean, I am a stripper, but… there were girls ahead of me who were saying, ‘Do you have to do this?’ and the police officers, like, reached for their gun holsters, in a threatening way. Like, what are you going to do, shoot her if she doesn’t take semi-naked photos?”

Another San Diego club, Exposé, reported similar harassment from the police during an inspection, and now 30 strippers from both clubs are suing the SDPD for violating their Fourth Amendment rights.

But I think I’ll take the high road and discuss the irony in this paragraph:

The vice unit is a special division of the police force that maintains regulatory control over “morality crimes” like underage drinking and prostitution. Vice detectives basically spend their week attending peep shows and strip clubs, hanging out in bars, searching for prostitutes on Craigslist, and cruising down El Cajon Boulevard, San Diego’s famous hangout for hookers.

Having police enforce “morality crimes” is kind of like having foxes guard hen houses. Modern policing is about the most amoral thing there is. They wield civil forfeiture laws to steal property from people who haven’t even been convicted of a crime, shoot family pets during no-knock raids, beat people whose skin contains a bit too much melanin, expropriate wealth from motorists, and otherwise be amoral individuals. Unlike police officers, strippers provide a service that people voluntarily pay them for. If anything the strippers should be overseeing police departments. This country has it all backwards.