A woman who had worked as a Hooker in downtown Honolulu for years taught me how to avoid getting arrested for prostitution. She saw me when I was a new face on the street and wanted to share her wisdom. She considered herself wise because she had been arrested for prostitution 42 times and beat the charges every time. She was dying of AIDS and was too sick looking to get dates. She wanted to make a contribution to other women who were considered among the lowest of the low by society and needed to know their rights or the police would happily walk all over them. Not them. Me.
I guess I had that lean and hungry look of someone who wanted drugs (crack, in those days) and had no money. But was willing to step into the brave new world of whatever it takes. I had yet to learn the true meaning of whatever. This woman helped me, in part bc it mattered that someone wanted to help me. She was very knowledgeable and in half an hour gave me the info I would rely upon to stay safe on the street. This was before internet advertising, when a working Girl got business when a man pulled over to let her into his car. Here is a list of what she taught me.
The Rules of the Streetwalking Game
- The crime is the verbal agreement to exchange something of perceived value for a specific sex act. Not limited to cash. Arrest is NOT contingent on the exchange of money.
- Every new recruit to the Honolulu Police Department had to take a turn in vice (I don’t know if that’s true 100%) They had to look like regular guys, pick you up, and get you to offer them the deal or get you to agree to their proposal of this for that. Sometimes you could get arrested for not refusing the deal so always remember what a normal woman would say to an unwelcome proposition and say it! “I’m sorry I don’t exchange money for sex.” Or “The sex is free. If you want to give me something that’s fine.”
- The undercovers are not always recording the interaction. Beware of being picked up by two guys because the second guy might be there to serve as a witness in court.
- Undercovers are not supposed to touch you or let you touch them. DO NOT expect the police to follow this regulation. There a contradiction. The police in Hawaii are legally allowed to get hand jobs or blow jobs and then arrest you. Unbelievable but true. They are not supposed to have intercourse but they get away with it bc no one cares about prostitutes. You’re not necessarily in the clear bc you’ve had sex with him, so don’t start talking deals after sex. For example a cop might ask you what he would have to pay for sex next time.
- It is a TOTAL MYTH that police have to admit they are cops if you ask. In fact, law enforcement is allowed to lie to you about anything as long as they don’t threaten or bribe you. People think police have to be honorable. They do not. They lie, but that’s ok bc you are considered unworthy of any respect so the public does not object.
- Hawaii does not have laws against entrapment. This is NOT legal info, but the common understanding of entrapment is the police creating a situation that would not otherwise have existed and then arrest people who would have been law abiding without police tempting them. In Hawaii, you get in the car with a strange man and it’s assumed you’d do that under any circumstance.
- Experienced “regulars” know the women have to avoid verbal agreements. They know enough not to say much. They’ll pull up, ask you if you want a ride, simply drive to an out if the way spot for a car date and hand you the money silently. No negotiation. Guys who want to get an understanding of what the price will be and what’s involved could be rational consumers. Or undercovers. Unfortunately, there’s no rationality in a law prohibiting consenting adults from making a private agreement. You’d like to have the discussion but you simply can’t. If the guy persists with the questions, and you cannot redirect him, get out of the car.
- Watch out for the words “full service” or “everything” bc you will get arrested for agreeing to provide these. Also, using abbreviations or slang like bj , won’t help. If guys say they are looking for any of the above, say no.
- Don’t think it makes no difference what you say bc if you get into a car with an undercover, you’re under arrest no matter what. Not all of the police are corrupt. If they don’t get you to say the right words, they’ll usually drop you off.
- Undercovers won’t buy you a soda or anything at all. Sometimes they’ll want to get rid of you if you ask for something tiny, so you can try making a request. Of course, regular guys seldom want to be bothered with that so you risk alienating dates if you appear to be greedy.
- Undercovers are usually part of a larger operation or a “Sting.” Watch the passenger side mirror to see if you are being followed.
- Just bc you date someone once or several times doesn’t mean you should ever talk agreement. Maybe the guy was off duty on previous occasions. Another possibility, maybe the guy isn’t a cop, but got caught in reverse sting, and now has to help the police catch Hookers. Plenty of snitches in Honolulu. What other place could there be a tv program like Dog The Bounty Hunter that shows people fearlessly snitching on camera?
- Sometimes cops aren’t after prostitution busts but are looking for drug busts. Never agree to pick up drugs for a date or indicate you know how to do it. A petty misdemeanor bust can turn into a felony on a dime (or a dime bag–pun intended). If you get caught with drugs or paraphernalia, you’re in felony trouble. You need to date to get dope but you must keep dope out of the date, ironically
- If a guy pulls up and asks you if you know where to find working girls, and you so much as point in a direction, you can be arrested for promoting prostitution, a felony.
- Undercovers abide by occupational safety standards. They will always have closed toe shoes that are in great shape and well suited for running. They usually have short, well tended hair and fingernails. They wear loose fitting shirts, untucked, to conceal their gun. Some people say they wear baseball hats, often backwards.
- Undercovers signal the people watching them by conspicuously bringing an arm up or down, often they’ll reach up to their hat with the left hand or down to the left pocket. You might notice the guy making eye contact with someone random on the side of the road he shouldn’t know. That’s a colleague.
- Undercovers might be unusually compassionate and willingly drive you to detox or the ER, whatever, for no compensation. They care if you say someone just hurt you and want to know more, on occasion going to look for the offender. Tricks, especially ones you don’t know, seldom care about you.
- Most people are terrible liars. Undercovers often say “I’m not a cop” almost immediately after you get in the car, and they nervously reiterate who they are not. They won’t make eye contact, or look you over the way men do. Probably bc they know they can’t have you.
- If your date tells you he is going to a certain place but does not head in that direction, get out of the car. He might be trying to keep you within the so-called “Weed and Seed” area. These districts are identified by the Feds as areas where the troublemakers need to be weeded out, and seeded with…I don’t know what. Something positive, I guess. If you get caught for any crime in a Weed and Seed area like downtown Honolulu, your bail us always $1000 and you’ll be banned from the area for five years. Just being caught in the area is a new charge. Of course, cops will, at times, falsify the arrest site in the paperwork, so don’t think you’re safe if you go outside of the boundary of Weed and Seed.