Former WFAA anchor Brad Hawkins, now a spokesman for Southwest Airlines, was arrested Monday on a charge of public lewdness after an incident at Flag Pole Hill Park, The Dallas Morning News reports. We’ve posted the full police report here. As best I can tell, the 37-year-old Hawkins has been out as gay for at least a few years, which raises the obvious question: What in the hell was he thinking? Anyhow, I’ve contacted Hawkins’ attorney, Pete Schulte, who told me via text message that he’ll be in court and unavailable all day. Here’s what Schulte told The Dallas Morning News: “We believe that Mr. Hawkins is not guilty, and we ask that public opinion be withheld until the facts are known.” Unfortunately, I’m afraid it’s a little late for public opinion to be withheld. The first three gay people I saw this morning asked me, “Hey, did you hear about Brad Hawkins?” Well aren’t we a gossipy bunch? But my other question here is, why is this newsworthy for The Dallas Morning News? Would they treat a straight person being arrested on a class-A misdemeanor charge the same way? I also have concerns about the arrest itself, but I’m told we’re never going to win this argument. Hawkins was arrested after he pressed an undercover officer’s hand, over the clothing, against his erect penis, according to the report. When the officer pulled his hand away, Hawkins said, “Sorry, I just wanted you to know how horney (SIC) you made me, and I wanted to feel your hand so later when I blow I have a thought to go by.” Hawkins then allegedly invited the undercover officer to meet him at his house for sex. Hawkins got on his bicycle and rode away, but police came to his house later and arrested him. Sexual contact, even when it’s over the clothing, has been interpreted as public lewdness by Texas courts. Here’s the definition of public lewdness under the penal code:
§ 21.07 PUBLIC LEWDNESS. (a) A person commits an offense if he knowingly engages in any of the following acts in a public place or, if not in a public place, he is reckless about whether another is present who will be offended or alarmed by his:
(1) act of sexual intercourse;
(2) act of deviate sexual intercourse;
(3) act of sexual contact; or
(4) act involving contact between the person’s mouth or genitals and the anus or genitals of an animal or fowl.
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