Last edited: February 14, 2005


Detroit Cops End Gay Entrapment Program, August 8, 2001

SUMMARY: Detroit police are ending an entrapment program aimed at gay men, in which police officers posed as gay and then came on to men in public parks and restrooms.

DETROIT — Detroit police are ending an entrapment program aimed at gay men.

After the Triangle Foundation, a gay rights group, made the practice public at a meeting with Detroit city council members police were ordered to stop targeting gay men.

Triangle’s evidence of the harassment and profiling included cases where male police decoys had been assigned to pose as gay and told to come-on to men using parks and public restrooms.

"[Gay and bisexual men] are being ticketed and arrested in their cars for no other reason than a conversation about sex, a conversation initiated and carried on by the decoy cops themselves, cops who play gay for the day," the president of the Triangle Foundation said.

"When a decoy behaves in a way to make the individual think it would be consensual activity, we no longer will prosecute that individual," prosecutor Mike Duggan said.

"I’m not going to charge people criminally for what they thought was a consensual act between adults," said Duggan, who added that such tactics appeared to unfairly target gays.

"We do not send female officers into sports bars to come on to guys to see which ones respond and then arrest them. We should not be sending undercover decoys … to do exactly the same thing."

Lorri L. Jean, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, welcomed the new policy. "Decoys, entrapment, vehicle seizures and arresting people for private conduct are tactics used to harass and intimidate gay men," Jean said.

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