If you’re a cop hoping to make a pimping charge stick, you might not want to pilfer drugs from the evidence room. Such a move might discredit your testimony in the eyes of the jury.
It just happened in Contra Costa County, where prosecutors were forced to dismiss charges against a suspected madam after the state’s star witness – a California Department of Justice agent – was charged with multiple counts of theft for allegedly stealing methamphetamines, marijuana and prescription pills from evidence lockers.
And if you’re a prosecutor who wants to charge a pimp with pandering – where the target appears already to be a prostitute – you might want to wait a few months until the state high court issues its opinion on whether the "to become a prostitute" language in California Penal Code Section 266(i) includes “changing management.”
The case arose out of a sting operation in a notorious high-prostitution area off Sepulveda Boulevard in Van Nuys.
California Penal Code 266(i) pandering is a felony punishable by three, four or six years in California state prison. Prostitution in California is a misdemeanor that carries a possible six-month jail sentence, fine of up to $1000, and if a car was used under certain circumstances, license suspension (or even vehicle forfeiture).