Charges against Stormy Daniels have been dropped on a technicality following her early Thursday arrest at an Ohio strip club as part of a human trafficking and prostitution sting.
Daniels was observed using her bare breasts to smack patrons, as well as grab the breasts of female patrons, according to the arrest report.
At approximately 11:30 a dancer using the stage name Stormy Daniels, later identified as Stephanie Clifford made her way to the main stage and began performing. The majority of the patrons got up from their tables and stood immediately adjacent to the stage throwing dollar bills at Ms. Clifford. During her performance after removing her top exposing her breasts she began forcing the faces of patrons into her chest and using her bare breasts to smack the patrons. The officers observed Ms. Clifford fondling the breasts of female patrons....
...Ms. Clifford leaned over, grabbed Det. Keckley's head and began smacking her face with her bare breasts and holding her face between her breasts and against her chest. Ms. Clifford then made her way over to Det. Lancaster and performed the same acts on him forcing his face into her chest between her breasts and began smacking his face with her bare breasts."
You can read the police report below in its entirety.
Fortunately for Stormy (real name Stephanie Clifford), she was arrested under a law that requires "regular" performances, while she had only performed once at the Sirens Gentlemen's club. That said, she was scheduled to perform Thursday night as well - meaning that had the Columbus PD charged her after her second performance at the club, the charges might have stuck.
I am pleased to report that the charges against my client @stormydaniels have been dismissed in their entirety (below motion was just granted). I want to thank Joe Gibson & his colleagues at the prosecutors ofc for their professionalism starting with our first call early this am. pic.twitter.com/xHPSWsyqM2— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) July 12, 2018
VIDEO: Stormy Daniels taken to jail in Columbus, Ohio. Forced to make early morning perp walk pic.twitter.com/XUcPmmqjuR— Jon Levine (@LevineJonathan) July 12, 2018
Two other women were arrested along with Daniels (real name Stephanie Clifford); Miranda Panda or Marion, Ohio and Brittany Walters of Pickerington, Ohio.
"All three were charged with Illegal Sexually Oriented Activity in a Sexually Oriented Business," reads a statement from the PD. Daniels was charged with three counts of the same violation "for illegally touching three different undercover Vice detectives."
The investigation began last fall, after Columbus police were made aware of various illegal activities occurring at various strip clubs across the city.
Columbus Police Makes 3 Arrests at Adult Entertainment Club— Columbus Ohio Police (@ColumbusPolice) July 12, 2018
As part of a long-term investigation into allegations of human trafficking,
prostitution, & other vice related violations, CPD arrested 3 individuals from Club Sirens at 6190 Cleveland Ave., early this morning, 7/12/18. pic.twitter.com/UJQzJ3iI6c
Following Stormy's arrest, her attorney Michael Avenatti sprung into action, firing off a string of tweets: "Just rcvd word that my client @StormyDaniels was arrested in Columbus Ohio whole performing the same act she has performed across the nation at nearly a hundred strip clubs," adding "This was a setup & politically motivated."
Just rcvd word that my client @StormyDaniels was arrested in Columbus Ohio whole performing the same act she has performed across the nation at nearly a hundred strip clubs. This was a setup & politically motivated. It reeks of desperation. We will fight all bogus charges. #Basta— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) July 12, 2018
10TV's Angela An spoke with Michael Avenatti by phone Thursday morning.
"I have reason to believe it was politically motivated," Avenatti said. "There's no question these officers were undercover at that strip club. They knew my client would be performing there and I find this to be a complete waste of resources."
Daniels was arrested under an Ohio law known as the Community Defense Act, which prohibits anyone from touching a nude or semi-nude dancer, unless they are related.
Specifically, the act "prohibits an employee who regularly appears nude or seminude on the premises of a sexually oriented business, while on the premises and while nude or seminude, from knowingly touching a patron who is not a member of the employee's immediate family... ...or allowing a patron who is not a member of the employee's immediate family or another employee who is not a member of the employee's immediate family to touch the employee or employee's clothing. "
Some “touches” face more serious penalties. Touching a dancer’s genitals, buttocks or the “female breast below a point immediately above the top of the areola” is a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. A second offense is a fourth-degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a $250 fine. - Dispatch.com
And thanks to the word "regularly" in the statute, Daniels is now a free woman after posting a $6,000 bond, and all charges have been dropped.