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Equal Protection at the Erotic Oasis: Examining Selective Prosecution Claims in Lewd Conduct Cases

NCJ Number
Criminal Justice Review Volume: 35 Issue: 4 Dated: December 2010 Pages: 453-471
Neva-Marie Polley; Richard Tewksbury
Date Published
December 2010
19 pages
This study investigated the selective enforcement and prosecution of lewd conduct cases.
Drawing on data from legal documents from 127 cases of men arrested for public sexual activity in known cruising locations ("erotic oases"), this article discusses the legal issue of selective prosecution. As shown, the decoy sting operations used to apprehend men engaging in same-sex sexual activities in public parks carry with them legal ramifications far beyond simply arresting and prosecuting offenders. A focus on the issues of discriminatory purpose and discriminatory effect is provided and discussion shows how each component of selective prosecution claims can (and did) influence the legal challenges of arrests of men engaging in same-sex sexual conduct in erotic oases. References (Published Abstract)