via Mark Frauenfelder @ Boing-Boing
(Tampa, Florida) State Rep. Bob Allen (R), a longtime foe of LGBT rights in Florida, has a bizarre excuse for being charged with offering a male cop $20 for oral sex in a washroom at a park.
He was busted last month in a sting at Veteran's Memorial Park in Titusville, Florida. (story)
In taped statements made by Allen to police following his arrest and released by the force Allen admits to soliciting the male officer but claims that it was the result of being nervous by the high number of black men in the park.
"I certainly wasn't there to have sex with anybody and certainly wasn't there to exchange money for it," Allen told officers.
Of the arresting officer Allen said in the tape, "This was a pretty stocky black guy, and there was nothing but other black guys around in the park."
He claimed he feared he "was about to be a statistic" would have said anything just to get away.
But on the tape Allen also admits warning the undercover cop that "undercover cops" were in the area and the man should be careful.
"I said they're around here, you ought to know about that."
He only realized he was talking to an officer when he flashed his badge.
The arresting officer's handwritten report on the arrest also was released by the force.
Titusville Officer Danny Kavanaugh who was on plainclothes duty says he observed Allen entering the washroom twice. Kavanaugh said he was drying his hands in a stall when Allen peered over the stall door.
The officer's report said that after peering over the stall a second time, Allen pushed open the door and joined Kavanaugh inside. Allen muttered "'hi,'v" and then said, "'this is kind of a public place, isn't it,'" the report said.
Kavanaugh wrote that he asked Allen about going somewhere else and Allen suggested going "across the bridge, it's quieter over there."
"Well look, man, I'm trying to make some money; you think you can hook me up with 20 bucks?" Kavanaugh wrote in the report that he had asked Allen.
The Republican lawmaker, the report said, replied, "Sure, I can do that, but this place is too public."
According to Kavanaugh's statement, the officer said, "do you want just (oral sex)?" and Allen replied, "I was thinking you would want one."
It was at that point Allen was arrested.
Ironically, Allen was the Police Union's 2007 Lawmaker of the Year.
In the last session of the Florida legislature he sponsored a failed bill that would have tightened the state's prohibition on public sex. He also has been a supporter of amending the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage and has opposed a bill to curb bullying of gay students.
Allen has been charged with solicitation for prostitution, which has a maximum penalty of one year in jail.
Prior to his arrest Allen was a co-chair of Sen.
John McCain's presidential campaign in Florida, a position he has since
But I guess it's OK 'cause he's part of the Republic Party.