Outrageous. Baton Rouge cops ask gay men for sex, then arrest them under struck-down sodomy law

In one of the most egregious abuses of police power in memory, east Baton Rouge, Louisiana Sheriff Sid J. Gautreaux, III is using a sodomy law that was struck down by the US Supreme Court ten years ago, as unconstitutional, in order to prosecute gay men for attempting to have sex.

Oh but it gets worse.  The way Sheriff Gautreaux gets his victims?  He has his deputy ask men if they want to go back to his place for sex, when they men say “yes” and come with, he arrests them.

Mind you, none of this involves any discussion of money.  And it’s not the gay men doing the propositioning, as if it’s illegal to ask another men to bed.  No, this is the sheriff’s department, and the city of Baton Rouge, entrapping gay men under a law that was struck down a decade ago by the US Supreme Court.

East Baton Rouge Sheriff Sid J. Gautreaux, III

East Baton Rouge Sheriff Sid J. Gautreaux, III

Which begs the question as to whether east Baton Rouge Sheriff Gautreaux is a blithering idiot who doesn’t even know the law he’s enforcing, or an authoritarian homophobe who thinks he can just arrest people he doesn’t like under laws that were struck down as unconstitutional ten years ago.

Sheriff Gautreaux is now claiming that the already-struck-down law is still on the books, and it’s not his job to decide which laws to enforce, it’s the court’s job.  Of course, he’s right – but the court did its job ten years ago, so why is the sheriff still enforcing laws that were struck down ten years ago?  Suggesting that the legislature still hasn’t repealed the law is hardly a defense – or are we back to southern segregation again, where southern law enforcement thinks it can ignore court rulings that defend minorities?

And let’s not even get into the whole entrapment issue.  I mean, seriously, having the deputy ask men if they want to have sex, and then why say “yes,” he says “you’re under arrest.”  As the Advocate piece points out, it’s perfectly legal for adult men to discuss having sex, so long as money, children or animals aren’t involved.

Almost makes you wonder at what point in the transaction the deputy is making the arrest.  I can’t help but think of that Onion piece from 1998 in which the “straight” man complains that gay men keep “sucking my —-.”  (You might not want to click the Onion piece from the office – here’s the link.)


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • racehustlers

    As Mr. Slave from South Park would say, ‘Oh Jesus Christ!!”

  • racehustlers

    Agreed Mike. I just wanted to point out the tactic that our law enforcement use and question their overreach with citizens.

  • Ninong

    Except that money was never discussed in any of these arrests, so it wasn’t prostitution and it wasn’t illegal. Big difference!

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Don’t count out ‘testilying’. Check it out on Google.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    Yes, it is similar. Of course, in that case, a law was being broken.

  • Jeff Jankowiak

    What a sad state of affairs. They should take it out of these cops pensions. Can you imagine the screaming?

  • racehustlers

    It reminds me of cops baiting Johns who are cruising for prostitutes. has been going on for decades.

  • racehustlers

    Isn’t this similar to what the cops have been doing to guys looking for prostitutes for decades? That is, posing as hookers and getting the guys to ask for sex?

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    That works

  • ComradeAnon

    I’m guessing a certain sheriff is looking for love with a jail full of sweaty mens!

  • Ninong

    You can’t sue “the city of Baton Rouge for the PD’s entrapment” because the arrests didn’t take place in Baton Rouge, nor were they made by police officers of the BRPD. Baton Rouge, at 79 sq miles, is the largest city in East Baton Rouge Parish but the parish covers 471 sq miles, so there’s a lot of territory for the EBRSO to cover. The BRPD covers the city of Baton Rouge. They were not involved in this at all.

    Sheriff Sid set up his sting operations in parks in East Baton Rouge Parish that are outside the city of Baton Rouge. Remember that in Louisiana, a county is called a parish. You can’t sue the city of Los Angeles for arrests made elsewhere in Los Angeles County by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office and you can’t sue the city of Baton Rouge for arrests made elsewhere in East Baton Rouge Parish by the EBRSO.

  • jeffgee1

    They’ll just take the funds from the public schools or libraries.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Yep, a rolled up knee sock in his pocket.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Dredge the bottom of the most foul smelling swamp in Louisiana and you’ll find a Landreiu.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    That’s why Vice has so many volunteers.

  • Ninong

    Not for drug deals or anything like that but what about entrapment when applied to solicitation of crime against nature? I remember being told by several people way back when that if the undercover cop kept denying that he was a law enforcement officer that would mess up the recording because the DA wouldn’t prosecute cases where the officer deliberately misled the person being accused of solicitation.

    I know people who were arrested in entrapment stings that I was aware of at the time, so I know how the young rookie cop attempted to entrap gay guys without even saying anything. That was a long time ago, more than half a century ago, so maybe it doesn’t work that way anymore but then again, this is Louisiana, so maybe it does?

  • Beau Siegelaub

    While the sheriff could be going after violent criminals, he is focusing his attention on gay men who are looking for consensual sex. If you want to know why Baton Rouge is so messed up, look no farther than Sheriff Gautreaux.

  • Jeff Jankowiak

    I cannot believe this does not smell like a civil rights lawsuit. I hope the men have a good lawyer and it becomes a class action suit. East Baton Rouge will be paying a lot of money. Get ready to have your taxes raised to cover this. Every citizen should be outraged.

  • William Dhalgren

    I wouldn’t count on that “if the cop denies being in law enforcement it’s entrapment” thing being true. I know it gets used a lot in movies and tv shows, but cops couldn’t go undercover if it was real.

  • Bill_Perdue

    More non-political personal attacks. What’s the point. Either you defend your politics or criticize my socialist politics or you don’t but if you choose not to then these personal attacks are pure pettiness.

  • Bill_Perdue

    I looked at that and today’s comment. If you were to explicitly propose mass or direct actions to embarrass Holder, Obama and and administration I’d agree.

    But you proposed asking him to intervene. I don’t agree with that. Obama and Holder are the problem, not the solution. “It is up to the U.S. attorney general (Eric Holder) to issue some guidelines to local law enforcement. (Ahem.)” It seems you did refer to Holder and not some ethereal, fictional attorney general.

    What happened to the parade of downvotes.

  • Bill_Perdue

    I didn’t ask who downvoted me? I don’t worry about downvotes. I have almost 29,000 up votes for a socialist perspective that calls for abandoning the Democrats. What happened to the parade of downvotes that turned out to be one downvote?

    No I don’t agree with you comment asking him to intervene.

    Obama and Holder are the problem, not the solution. “It is up to the U.S. attorney general (Eric Holder) to issue some guidelines to local law enforcement. (Ahem.)” It seems you did refer to Holder and not some ethereal, fictional attorney general.

  • cole3244

    the baton rouge sheriff homophobes are gay curious and hoping.

  • caphillprof

    Perhaps there is a little progress. John Money said that most vice cops only made the solicitation arrest after they came. DC in the day was notorious for a vice cop who would solicit oral sex in tea rooms and as he came he would flash his badge. In more recent times, a friend was arrested for solicitation at Springfield Mall when an undercover guy followed him out to his car in the parking lot. A week after the arrest, the undercover guy telephoned him about getting together for a date!

  • http://musephotos.wordpress.com/ GarySFBCN

    Any normal person easily understands your post, hence the problem.

  • FLL

    I have no quarrel with your points about civil rights and liberties. Review my original comment above:

    “Don’t you think it’s part of Eric Holder’s job as U.S. attorney general to provide local law enforcement agencies with guidelines to avoid abuses like this?”

    When you read that sentence, you can see that I’m pointing out what is part of Holder’s job with the implication that Holder is not doing his job. The sentence above is a critique of Holder’s performance, not a suggestion that anyone needs to rely on him to address the problem at the Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Department. Addressing the grievance through the judicial system would be a good solution. The judiciary is always a method of obtaining justice when elected officials don’t fulfill their duties.

  • http://firefeeder.blogspot.com/ Stratplayer

    The taxpayers of Baton Rouge are going to greatly appreciate having to pick up the tab for the inevitable flurry of lawsuits to come.

  • http://firefeeder.blogspot.com/ Stratplayer

    Excellent point and I also love your handle. It makes me want to change mine to billbyrd.

  • ComradeRutherford

    Who do the police work for? The People, the Prison Industry, the Prosecutors?

    If the AG for Baton Rouge tells the police that no case will be brought on these arrests, then why wouldn’t the police stop arresting these folks?

    There is only one answer: The Sheriff is an 4sshole.

  • Bill_Perdue

    I indicated why I disagree with going to Holder – he and Obama are the enemies of civil rights and liberties.

    The rest is not objectionable.

    What parade of down votes? You have none yesterday and one today. When people down vote you that means they disagree with you. Don’t take it personally.

  • HKAnders

    It reminds me of the Butters’ Bottom Bitch episode of South Park.

  • Bill_Perdue

    So it’s the latter. More personal attacks – now it seems I’ve gone from being the bad uncle to being a fascist which means you continue to vomiting on the internet and have no answers to political questions.

    Believe me, I don’t want you marching with me.

    You’re not responding to me, you initiated this.

  • FLL

    Did you disagree with my comment yesterday? And no, that wasn’t me who “downvoted” your comments above. Those were other people.

  • http://musephotos.wordpress.com/ GarySFBCN

    I have ‘objections’ to your apparent inability to operate outside of the incredibly immature ‘all or none’ universe, and your infantile, bullshit romantic notion of ‘revolution.’ I have no problems coexisting with people like you. The problem is that you cannot coexist with people like me because of your all or none approach to life.

    I’m never going to march in 100% lockstep with you and that means that you will lie about me, calling me an Obot, writing that I support the most vile things that emanate from our government, all of which is untrue.

    In your pathetic little fascist mind, you are always right and those of us who do not 100% agree are the enemy.

    This is my last direct response to you, period.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Yesterday you said, on the same subject “It is up to the U.S. attorney general (Eric Holder) to issue some guidelines to local law enforcement. (Ahem.)” It seems you did refer to Holder and not some fictive attorney general.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Democrats are the enemy of civil liberties and so are Republicans.

    Holder and Obama are right wingers intent on building a police state, busting unions, and gutting Social Security and Medicare. Republicans love them for that.

    Do you, as an Obama supporter, have any objections to those statements. Or will you continue to limit yourself to lame personal attacks that serve nothing but the release of bile on the internet.

  • http://musephotos.wordpress.com/ GarySFBCN

    Good question about Holder. I think the process is that the man arrested will have to rely upon the courts to toss the case.

    Also, trying to reason with Bill is a waste of time. Best to treat him like a nutcase uncle who you only see once each year at the Thanksgiving dinner table.

  • Bill_Perdue

    My comment was a criticism of Democrat and Republican administrations that have led the attack on the Bill of Rights, whistle blowers and the retirement income of working people. Democrats are the enemy and so are Republicans.

  • FLL

    My question wasn’t about Eric Holder personally, but about the duties of the U.S. attorney general. I know that you can’t see who “downvotes” in Disqus, but in any case, by comment probably didn’t deserve a “downvote.”

  • DastiusKrazitauc

    Stories like this beg another question: Is it about latent homosexuals in positions of power acting out? They get a thrill out of being an active player in the scenario, cruising in a park, inviting another man home for sex. But then when the other man agrees and it gets too real, the self-loathing and fear kicks in and punishment must be administered. By arresting the willing gay man, they are punishing the part of themselves they hate.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Correct, it’s still entrapment.

  • eric jefferson

    But the arrested guys in this case didn’t even commit any sex act unless thought crimes are now prosecuted.

  • Ninong

    The crime against nature laws are still used in some states (e.g., Louisiana) to arrest gay men caught engaging in public conduct or if there is an offer of money involved (prostitution), because Lawrence specifically excluded public conduct or prostitution. http://equalitymatters.org/blog/201108080012
    If the cops come across a car parked in a secluded spot late at night and the couple inside engaged in sex are opposite sex, they’ll usually either ignore them or tell them to move on, but if they’re same sex and they catch them in the act, they could charge them with crime against nature if they want to. It all depends on just how redneck the authorities are.
    In Louisiana if a gay man is caught offering money to a decoy copy, he can be charged with either solicitation of prostitution or the more serious charge of solicitation of crime against nature. Lawrence is no help there.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Holder defended Obama’s racist murders of Anwar al-Aulaqi, Samir Khan, ‘Abd al-Rahman Anwar al-Aulaqi and Jude Mohammed.

    Holder and the Obama administration, applauded at every step by Republicans and other rightists, are enemies of civil liberties who are leading the charge against what’s left of the Bill of Rights by supporting the Paytriot Act, FISA, NDAA and by murdering US citizens, torturing Brad manning and trying to kidnap and imprison Snowden.

    Expecting Holder to promote civil liberties is like expecting Obama and Boehner to protect Social Security. Both ideas are daft.

  • Peacock

    How bout arresting the parents of gays as well ! I’m mean it’s pretty clear that they are actually the source of the matter ! I’m mean you have to fornicate to procreate but i mean you also have to be gay to choose to have gay children freaks ! So I mean in order for it to be a choice at all ! Obviously must come from a direct source ! Yep ! That’s just how that worx ! Dang ! Am I good or what !?..
    Now u cops ! Go on & rustle u up some homo straight moms & dads who have also gave in for the easy choice for way too much fun of choosing homosexual lifestyles !
    Ya kno ! Those parents who make that kinda choice * A Gay ! Choice ! Why ! They live right next to everybody !
    N ! O ! T !!!

    * what I really think is that it would be very Bennificial Throughout all avenues of public supported appointees of the law to uphold peace & justice Without discrimination but with perhaps a different aproach of highly scrutinized tactics that are proven by those who haves endured and survived the cruelty of the intoxicated maniacs unleashed merely by means of only qualifying through a short coarse of police training , ( which is basically ,not all! But most !, a test of being completely adiquate as a straight man or woman) especially mid-west , underdeveloped. southern {3rd-world} states
    But what I’m getting at is that through every “12 step programs” has proven countless of lives have developed a reprieve or consciousness which has thouroghly and profoundly given direction and implements understanding the Purposness

  • Bill_Perdue

    exactly.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Entrapment can occur everywhere under ‘lewdness’ or ‘public lewdness’ laws which are still enforced in spite of Lawrence v. Texas or United States v. Windsor.

    They happen wherever religious cults infest society.

  • mark

    what about Shreveport La? anyone check any other towns in Louisiana?

  • Bill_Perdue

    Not surprising given the fact that Democrat Senator Mary Landreiu is a major bigot enabler. “

    Sen. Mary Landrieu: I Support Gay Marriage Personally NOT Publically, I Might Get Voted Out Of Office – “Landrieu told CNN National Political Correspondent Jim Acosta in an interview Friday that she personally believes “people should love who they love and marry who they want to marry,” but that her obligation rests with the people of Louisiana who elected her. “My state has a very strong constitutional amendment not only against gay marriage but against gay partnerships. So I’m looking at the people of Louisiana trying to represent their interests” http://www.back2stonewall.com/2013/04/sen-mary-landrieu-support-gay-marriage-personally-publically-voted-office.html

    Like Obama in 2008, this kind bigot enableing promts the discriminaiton, harassment, violence and even murder that we face, and not just in Louisiiana.

    Add to that the fact that Baton Rouge is the home of ‘kill the gays’ (1) pentecostal preacher Jimmy Swaggart and you’ve got a hotbed of bigotry.

    (1) “I get amazed, I can’t look at it but about 10 seconds, at these politicians dancing around this, dancing around this, I’m trying to find a correct name for it, this utter absolute, asinine, idiotic stupidity of men marrying men.” (shouts from crowd)

    “I’ve never seen a man in my life I wanted to marry.” (shouts, applause) “And I’m gonna be blunt and plain, if one ever looks at me like that I’m gonna kill him and tell God he died.” (laughter, applause) “In case anybody doesn’t know, God calls it an abomnation (sic). It’s an abomnation (sic)! It’s an abomnation (sic)!” (applause)

    “These ridiculous, utterly absurd district attorneys and judges and state congress and ‘well, we don’t know’… they ought to, they ought to, they ought to have to marry a pig and live with them forever.” (laughter) “I’m not knocking the poor homosexual, I’m not. They need salvation just like anybody else. I’m knocking our pitiful, pathetic lawmakers. And I thank God that President Bush has stated,” (applause) “we need a Constitutional amendment that states that marriage is between a man and a woman.” (applause)

    http://www.spike.com/video-clips/e9nl1z/jimmy-swaggart-would-kill-a-homosexual – there’s an ad before the video, it goes away.

  • AnitaMann

    Kinda trollish. Must have been working it hard to get that many to go home with him. Maybe he has a special charm in person, but doubt it. Oh, and yes: sue them into oblivion.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    BBQ sans ‘Fried Green Tomatoes.’

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    The same genetic garbage that produces a thug like Sheriff Arpaio in Arizona.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    They have plenty to do. Hunting gays and people of color has been the blood sport of law officers for decades and beyond.

  • benb

    Oh yeah. Sue the city of Baton Rouge for the PD’s entrapment. Make ‘em pay. Get Sheriff Gautreaux fired and nail the DA for letting it happen. This isn’t the 1950s where they can arrest a guy and make him plea bargain to save his job, his family, and his life. If it can happen to M2M, it can happen to M2W or anyone else. I’m in for making an example here. I’m in for making it messy.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    I wouldn’t count on Eric Holder for anything even resembling justice.

  • Tyroanee

    To Protect & Serve… or, To Entrap & Humiliate.

  • GDHJ

    I like idea. Let’s not just destroy the town, let’s destroy the people, too. If they’re not going to treat people with some respect… Let’s take away anything and everything they have. Teach them what it’s like to have everything taken from them.

  • labman57

    To demonstrate their commitment to our sacred U.S. Constitution, many conservative pundits, politicians, and public officials strive to eliminate those Amendments that conflict with their ideology, simply ignore other sections that they find inconvenient to honor, and to pick and choose which federal court rulings they deem worthy to uphold.

  • Ninong

    The EBR sheriff’s office and the BRPD should be combined but don’t hold your breath waiting for that to happen.

  • FLL

    Ridiculous misuse of local law enforcement resources to charge people under a law that was struck down by the Supreme Court in 2003. Don’t you think it’s part of Eric Holder’s job as U.S. attorney general to provide local law enforcement agencies with guidelines to avoid abuses like this?

  • Ninong

    If they drive those gay fellas over to Gov. Bobby Jindal’s office he’ll exorcise the gay demons right out of ‘em.

    Bobby Jindal, Amateur Exorcist.
    Not exactly an expert on “something called volcano monitoring,” whatever that is.

  • tomtallis

    It seems to me that the Baton Rouge sherrif’s department is overstaffed with officers who have very little to do. It further seems to me that they should undergo an immediate budget cut to get rid of the dead wood.

  • ben

    Just a heads up, this is not the city police it is the sheriff, here is the follow up. The arrests were made near Central a town with a high amount of conservative christians.
    http://theadvocate.com/home/6631425-125/ebrso-park-arrests-needed-different

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    My vote? Sheriff Gautreaux is an authoritarian homophobe who has decided to use his office to persecute gay men, even knowing the men he arrests will never be charged with the crime he’s using to arrest and book them.

  • Mighty

    Sue them into bankruptcy. Sue the city until enough millions are spent they can’t afford to pay police to do this kind of crap. After that bring criminal charges on those involved. Sue them personally as well. Put liens on their homes.

  • Ninong

    You would think that Sheriff Sid would be more concerned about the fact that Baton Rouge is on America’s Top 10 List again — that’s the list of the 10 deadliest cities in America. They’re No. 8. http://www.policymic.com/articles/22686/america-s-10-deadliest-cities-2012

  • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

    Most states that had sodomy laws on the books in 2003 have never repealed them so the laws are still there. People like this count on gay men to just pay the fine and go home to avoid any public embarrassment. This is an attempt to harass gay people and hopefully no judge will allow this to go forward, but it may have to go up a few levels. What a disgrace.

  • Ty Morgan

    Is there a swamp full of alligators down there where we can throw this fool?

  • LosGatosCA

    Unexpectedly good news: Louisiana jurisdiction only 10 years behind the times.

    Bad news: Enforcing a law that was 100+ years behind the times to start with.

    At least it’s not Texas, Tulia, Texas that is.

    These things seem to just happen in the South. Nobody knows why.

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