UPDATE: On Thursday, prosecutors dropped charges against Stormy Daniels, who was cuffed for motorboating undercover vice cops while performing at a strip club in Columbus, Ohio.
In a statement, Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein said no crime was committed because Clifford was not a regular performer at the club, as required under the law she was accused of violating.
“My office was not involved in this sting operation, so any additional questions about it must be directed to the Columbus Division of Police,” Klein added. “The charges have been dismissed.”
On Wednesday, July 18, the charges against Brittany Walters and Miranda Panda were also dropped.
Stormy Daniels was busted at a Columbus, Ohio strip club late Wednesday in what appears to be a sting by the police department’s vice squad.
The arrest came in the midst of Daniels’ “Make America Horny Again” tour, and as her attorney continues his crusade against President Trump.
The 39-year-old porn star, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, catapulted to fame earlier this year after the press reported on her one-night-stand with President Trump in 2006. She sued Trump and his embattled ex-attorney, Michael Cohen, to be released from a hush agreement over the alleged affair.
Daniels was charged with three counts of illegally operating a sexually oriented business—employee knowingly touching any patron. According to Ohio state law, anyone who isn’t a family member is prohibited from touching a nude or semi-nude performer.
Court records show Daniels posted a $6,054 bond. She is expected to plead not guilty, and an arraignment is scheduled for Friday morning in Franklin County Municipal Court. Her second performance in Columbus was canceled.
“As a result of what happened last night, I will unfortunately be unable to go forward with tonight's scheduled performance. I deeply apologize to my fans in Columbus,” Daniels said in a statement released by her attorney, Michael Avenatti.
An arrest report reviewed by The Daily Beast reveals how two female vice cops and a pair of male colleagues entered Sirens Gentleman’s Club and zeroed in on Daniels, as well as two other jiggle joint employees.
The four officers visited Sirens around 10 p.m. to investigate “Vice related offenses as a result of complaints received alleging prostitution and drug activity,” the document stated.
Officer Mary Praither and Detective Whitney Lancaster sat near the stage of the VIP area, where another dancer, Brittany Walters, was performing in the middle of the room and allegedly rubbed her bare breasts on Praither’s face before fondling Praither’s chest. The foursome then headed to the main room and sat at a table. Around 11:30 p.m., Clifford took the stage, and most of the customers “got up from their tables and stood immediately adjacent to the stage throwing dollar bills at Ms. Clifford,” the police report stated. While dancing, Clifford removed her top and “began forcing the faces of the patrons into her chest and using her bare breasts to smack the patrons,” the affidavit said, adding that she was “fondling the breasts of female patrons.”
When the officers observed Cliffords’ antics, Detective Lancaster, Officer Praither and Detective Shana Keckley approached the stage. “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 against her chest,” the report stated. Clifford then found Lancaster and performed the same stage maneuver, before moving down the stage to Praither. According to the report, Clifford “began fondling Ofc. Praither’s buttock and breasts” before pressing Praither’s face into her chest. Another officer, Det. Steven Rosser, watched the “criminal activity” from the bar area. After Clifford was done with Praither, Rosser exited the club to request backup to arrest Clifford and two club employees: Walters and Miranda Panda.
Panda, according to the report, was a server who approached the cops’ table and “began rubbing her buttock with her hands in front of all four officers.”
Columbus police did not return messages Thursday.
The department, however, released a statement saying the bust was “part of a long-term investigation into allegations of human trafficking, prostitution, along with other vice related violations.”
On MSNBC’s Velshi & Ruhle Thursday morning, Avenatti said Columbus cops asked to plant their faces in Daniels' chest. He declined to comment on whether Daniels said yes. "Unbeknownst to her, the police had set up a sting operation within the strip club with multiple officers. And during her performance they asked her if they could place their face in between her breasts while she was performing on stage," Avenatti said.