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A retired priest was one of the six men arrested Thursday during a vice crackdown inside a restroom at a park in Holly Hill, Florida.
The 61-year-old man was charged with exposure of sexual organs after he allegedly exposed himself to an undercover officer inside the restroom.
According to reports, the man supposedly told the officer he was aware of the term “cruising,” when one searches for a sexual partner in a public facility. He allegedly told the officer he was seeking a rush.
The retired priest identified himself as a retired attorney who previously worked as a canon lawyer for the Orlando diocese.
The Orlando Diocese has allegedly removed the man’s authority to function as a priest until the investigation is complete.
The man was not taken to jail and released without having to post bond.
The other five men face charges of exposure of sexual organs, resisting arrest without violence and/or unnatural and lascivious acts.
All of the six men arrested were given trespass warnings which prohibit them from using the park.
Undercover sex crackdown stings, like the one these men were arrested for, tend to take place in park or beach bathrooms, shopping malls, public parks, alleys and adult book stores. Sometimes the sting operations will be set up by vice squads to address citizen complaints in regards to people “cruising” the public area for a sexual liaison. However, what goes on at these sting locations may translate into entrapment.
Decoy officers placed in a lewd conduct sting location may start “cruising” you in an attempt to lure you into exposing sexual organs, masturbating or soliciting a sexual act. This means that the officer may make heavy eye contact, grab or rub his genitalia from outside the pants and possibly walk casually in and out of restroom stalls. Unfortunately this is all an act to trap individuals into taking the bait, which ultimately ends in an arrest.
Under Florida Statutes, it is consider a misdemeanor of the first degree to expose one’s sexual organs. Many times arrests for exposure of sexual organs will result in a citation to appear in court, but sometimes officers will arrest you and book you in jail before releasing you with a court citation. Despite what the officer chooses to do, it is important to contact the Florida Sex Crimes Attorneys immediately so that we can try and persuade the prosecution to not formally file charges. Ramifications for this misdemeanor offense can include probation, fines, counseling, an order to stay away from the location and possibly jail time.
If you have been arrested for exposure of sexual organs in an undercover police trap anywhere in the state of Florida, contact the Florida Sex Crimes Attorneys at Whittel & Melton online or dial us toll-free at 1-866-608-5LAW (5529).
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