Lieutenant denies giving OK to officer in prostitution sting

David Yates Aug. 25, 2008, 8:11am

Having sex with prostitutes is neither necessary nor ethical, testified the Beaumont police lieutenant who allegedly told suspended officer Keith Breiner it was alright for him to engage in sex acts with women working at a West End spa.

Lt. Curtis Breaux, of the Beaumont Police Department's narcotics division, testified Monday, Aug. 25, that he did not believe Breiner was an ethical person and orally instructed the officer not to engage in sex acts, as the week long hearing continued.

Breiner is fighting for his career after he and another officer had sex with female employees at a spa that the police suspected was a front for prostitution.

Breiner admitted to having sex with the women while he was undercover at the Sun Spa, and claimed his superior officers not only knew about it, but told him engaging in a sexual act was necessary to make a felony case against the spa and gave him the money to pay the women.

After being suspended indefinitely, Breiner filed a lawsuit and got a restraining order on July 24 to stop his scheduled Aug. 1 termination.

On Aug. 19, District Judge Gary Sanderson began hearing arguments to determine if his court is appropriate jurisdiction for the case that has brought not only Breiner's but the entire department's actions under scrutiny.

Sanderson will have to decide if Breiner's constitutional rights outweigh a collective bargaining agreement with the police officers' union and allow the litigation to continue.

Although officers having sex with a prostitute is permissible under law, it was not necessary in this case, and is a class B misdemeanor, Breaux said during the hearing.

Breaux also denied having any hands on involvement with the case, testifying that he delegated its operations to an officer under him.

Court documents and testimony show that Breiner was never provided with any written instructions that expressly ordered him not to engage in sexual acts while undercover at the spa.

Breaux testified that a lot of the department's business is handled orally.

Breiner's attorney, Larry Watts of Houston, insinuated that giving officers instructions orally gives the department "wiggle room."

Breiner said in his affidavit that Breaux approached him about having sex to pursue a felony prostitution case.

Breaux denied the allegation.

The city is represented by City Attorney Tyrone Cooper.

Case No. B182-127

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