San Diego Paying $1.5 Million After Police Forced Strippers to Pose for Photos

The city of San Diego will pay several nude dancers nearly $1.5 million due to misbehavior by the city’s police force.

The city has an ordinance requiring strippers to get identification cards, but in 2013 and 2014, police went too far. Officers showed up to two clubs and detained the performers for more than an hour, subjected them to unnecessary inspections and lined them up for photographs.

The women allege the officers made demeaning comments and threatened to arrest them if they attempted to leave. They filed suit, claiming their constitutional rights were violated.

Officers claim they took the photos to document the women’s tattoos for tracking purposes.

In March, a federal judge gave the women a partial victory, saying the city ordinance violated their First Amendment rights. The city has been trying to dismiss the case, and in late October the City Council approved two financial settlements: $110,000 to one woman and $1.4 million to be split among 16 other women. (Source:, October 31.)

California Tax Foundation   |   1215 K Street, Sacramento, CA 95814   |   916.441.0490   |