Two Mobile Police Officers and an MPD Lieutenant are facing disciplinary action after alleged misconduct with local strippers, according to Mobile Police Chief James Barber.
“The allegations were that officers were involved in inappropriate sexual relationships with some of the strippers in these clubs,” said Chief Barber.
When asked if it was in exchange for something, Chief Barber replied, “In exchange for non-enforcement.”
The two officers are accused of getting lap dances at multiple local strip clubs and engaging in sexual conduct in exchange for keeping quiet about the strippers’ violations.
A lieutenant is facing disciplinary action after allegedly failing to supervise.
Barber said the initial complaint was filed by someone within the police department.
“I think their intention was to expose it. It was to stop that type of conduct from occurring within the very unit that was charged with regulating this industry,” said Barber.
Barber said the sexual misconduct happened off-duty, but the ticket violations happened on-duty.
Chief: University of South Alabama Officer involved
The chief said a University of South Alabama Police Officer, who worked under the Mobile County Street Enforcement Narcotics Team (MCSENT), was also part of the internal investigation.
He said the results of the investigation were handed over to USA’s Police Chief Zeke Aull.
FOX10 News has learned the officer no longer works for the USA Police Department.
We asked for the officer’s identity, but the university will not release the information citing personnel privacy.
Local club owner is “shocked”
The Director of Operations of Diamonds Adult Entertainment said adult clubs get visits three or four times a year by the ABC board and local law enforcement. Those agencies are supposed to make sure the club and entertainers are following the rules.
“Here’s the protocol: they’ll walk in and say, ‘Hey do me a favor and bring these girls to the back one at a time,’ and they’ll go back in natural light,” said Jimmie Ellis.
Ellis said officers will make sure the women have an entertainment card and are wearing the proper attire. If not, they’ll get a ticket. The women though, are never alone, according to Ellis.
“We’ve probably had 6-8 tickets in the last six months for either not having a card or not having latex,” Ellis said.
Police have not released the names of the clubs, but it’s an investigation that took Ellis by surprise.
“If something like that happened, I am shocked that I don’t know about it. Even if it wasn’t our club I’m shocked,” he said. “How in the world could that happen with them in a group (and) the manager in a room? How they made that arrangement is a little beyond me.”
The two MPD officers are facing department charges including conduct unbecoming, neglect of duty, violation of code of ethics, misuse of position and failing to obey a direct order. The lieutenant is facing a failure to supervise charge.
Three senior officers will decide if the officers are guilty of the charges during a disciplinary hearing underway now.
Three senior officers will decide if the officers are guilty of the charges during a disciplinary hearing. If found guilty, the maximum penalty would be termination.
The senior officers will make a recommendation to the chief and Barber will make the final call.
Barber said a final decision should be made by Wednesday, January 22. He will release the information at 1 p.m.
Barber said the officers have been re-assigned while the disciplinary hearing is underway and that the investigation will continue to make sure there is not a pattern of this type of misconduct.
“I think you heard me state there is a lot of great things that these guys do all the time but unfortunately the plane that lands as spectacular as the one that crashes,” said Barber.
FOX10 News will continue to track this story as new details unfold.