The Dallas Morning News reports that vice officers made four arrests on Monday and Tuesday in the bathrooms of Macy’s and Dillard’s at NorthPark Center. Now I’m no attorney, and I’m not trying to justify the suspects’ behavior, but some of these arrests would appear to border on entrapment. For example:
Tuesday afternoon, police were back inside Macy’s. Police say during one exchange, a 28-year-old man put his cell phone in the doorway of a bathroom stall so the officer could read it.
“Meet me in the Dillard’s restroom first floor,” said a message on the phone’s screen.
The officer nodded, and they walked to the Dillard’s bathroom. Police say the man went to the last stall, unzipped his blue jeans and pulled them below his waist. While facing the officer, who stood outside the stall, the man began masturbating, police say.
UPDATE: Since I’m under attack about this in the comments below, allow me to clarify. Again, I’m not defending the suspects’ behavior, nor am I suggesting that what they did was not ultimately illegal. I’m merely questioning, from a civil liberties standpoint, the tactics used by police to arrest these men. I understand the argument that children use those restrooms, just as some argued that the Patriot Act was justified because of 9/11. I also understand that the LGBT community is probably NEVER going to win here from a PR standpoint, but that doesn’t change my beliefs about what I believe should be strict limits on government power and intrusion. I also believe Instant Tea is an appropriate place to have a civil discussion about this issue, so by all means keep it coming (except for you, Dante).