April 20, 2004 12:08am
Busted in Saint Louis
Source: Letters to the Editor
by: Ike Sanders
(SAINT LOUIS, MO) -- On March 23, 2004, adult webmaster Isaac "Ike" Sandlin was arrested on charges of Promoting Prostitution and Patronizing Prostitution in Saint Louis, Missouri.
The story opens when in late February, Ike received an online application submitted from a local female by the name of Jessie, interested in modeling for his adult website PlayasEntertainment.com. He contacted Jessie and scheduled an appointment for them to meet at a Saint Louis area shopping mall.
Upon meeting with Jessie he immediately asked to see her identification to ensure that she was of legal age and she was.
Ike informed Jessie that he has a screening process which involves the model to take a nude photo before he discloses any information to her regarding the industry and procedures of how his online website works.
Before he could get a comfortable seat, Jessie began immediately asking questions regarding pay and how the site operates. He once again informed her of his screening process but she continued with questions.
Before Ike got the opportunity to ask Jessie was she a police officer or if she working for a law enforcement agency, Ike immediately knew that this was a setup and that she was either a police officer or working for some type of law enforcement agency. So he didn't bother asking the question, as he was prepared and waiting for this day to come when Missouri would try to come down on him.
Knowing this, Ike decided to cooperate with Jessie a little without informing her that he knew who or what she was. So some of her questions were answered while others were not.
Ike brought along with him a model release form, his own set of rules regarding on the set shooting, an insurance liability release form, a copy of the Ten Commandments of XXX, a W-9 and 2 production scripts that he always use when interviewing potential models.
Ike uses the standard model release form issued by the Free Speech Coalition, but as he puts it the scripts aren't real, they are fakes but used to determine the willingness of his potential models and how open they are with accepting assignments from normal to extreme. However Ike does not shoot material that he feels would be considered extreme or could possibly be deemed obscene.
Upon closing the interview and feeling more comfortable, Ike decides to invite Jessie back to his studio so that she can see more and if his hunch is correct, to show her that what he does is real and that he is totally legal and following all laws and guidelines set by the federal government.
Jessie informs him that her and her boyfriend were going to go eat after the interview and that he was in the car awaiting her return. But informs Ike that she and her boyfriend would love to come by after they eat.
Upon scheduling the interview Ike remembered asking Jessie if she had a boyfriend and she stated "No". Ike always asks this question to prevent problems from arising at his studio or during a shoot as it is not uncommon for a boyfriend or significant other to get upset and want to make trouble when he finds out his girl is performing in adult videos, especially when it involves ones woman and another male.
So with Ike learning this he is furthermore assured that Jessie was a police officer and was returning to her partner to inform him of what she feels she has gained or learned.
So Ike informed her that it was ok and for her to call him once they have finished eating and that he would give them directions as to how to get to his location.
They parted and when Ike arrived back to his studio he immediately set everything out in plain view for them to view when they arrive.
About an hour or so later he got a call from Jessie stating that they were finished eating and that they were ready to come to his location, but immediately stated that she needed to call him back and hung up the phone.
While on the phone Ike overheard a lot of noise in the background of the conversation but was even more comfortable knowing that his assumption is correct regarding her being a police officer.
A few moments later the phone rang again and it was Jessie asking for the directions to his location, Ike guided them to where he was located.
Upon the couple arriving Ike noticed that the guy who came with Jessie was dressed in what he would consider inappropriate attire for dining especially when Jessie was dressed properly. Ike then felt he was also a police officer posing to look as if he isn't paid enough at his current job.
Ike introduced himself to the guy, viewed his Id and again stated his screening process to the guy and the guy grew offensive. He stated that he wasn't comfortable with taking a picture as he didn't want his picture to end up on the internet without him being compensated for the picture.
Ike informed him that the photo is taken so that he would feel secure with answering questions regarding his company and procedures to perfect strangers who could be police officers. Ike furthermore stated that his picture would not end up on the internet and that he would not risk his company and all he has worked for by placing his photo online without his permission and legal documents being filed.
The guy really wasn't interested in cooperating which bags the question of why would you seek employment in the adult field when you aren't willing to cooperate? Unless you are a police officer understanding that if you take a nude photo it could put a dent in their case.
Ike decided to show them a little more to help the guy come around to taking the photo. Ike knew he wasn't going to get a photo from them but didn't want them to leave without coming to see what they really came to see.
They continued their conversation in the upper level of Ike's production studio. The conversation left Jessica completely out and was continued with the guy and Ike, however Ike noticed Jessica to be looking around at all of the production equipment that was placed in plain view.
The conversation continued with the guy not cooperating with taking the photo, more questions were asked, some answered and some not. Ike felt that they were really wanting to get him to speak on how much money he would pay them for various assignments.
Ike did explain to them that there is money in this industry for sure but wasn't going to mention any numbers as he wasn't sure what they may try to charge him with since he knows he is in Missouri and not California.
Ike is aware that Prostitution charges being the most common charges in his area could be imposed as he recalls a friend, Bruce Thomas of BareGirls.com went through a similar situation along with industry vets Tom and Suzi Whal of Video Alternatives being charged with prostitution charges early on within the state of Missouri.
The state of Missouri as we all know frowns on the adult industry and seems to not want adult material or the production of adult material in their communities. Missouri is known to be conservative and considered to be a very religious state.
Ike has been assured through his research that producing adult videos in the state of Missouri is totally legal and has been doing so for a little over 4 years for other companies and private use customers without any problems.
About a month later on March 23, 2004 as Ike was resting in his studio with a young lady friend who is not a model or performer for Ike, he awoke to loud noise in the lower level of his production studio which sounded like voices.
Ike moved toward the lower level of his studio when he came upon a flock of police officers with guns and bulletproof vests.
Ike was handcuffed and placed on his sofa without his rights being read, a search warrant was showed to him which appeared to not be legit, and he was asked were there anyone else in the studio?
Upon an officer parting up to the upper level of the studio, Ike's lady friend was coming downstairs partially nude. She was immediately grabbed cuffed and placed on the sofa next to Ike and the question was asked again, is there anyone else upstairs?
As one of the officers moved upstairs to ensure no one else was there for the 10th time Ike was asking, "what is this all about"? Cracking a joke as to how the officers came into his place, Ike asked, "did I kill someone in my sleep"?
The officers responded that they would tell him in a moment. The close was clear and the officers allowed Ike's lady friend to return upstairs to put on some clothing while keeping her up there to interrogate her.
A detective Garrett walked in and finally informed Ike that they were there regarding his adult website.
Detective Garrett informed Ike that they had evidence on him regarding the promotion of prostitution and had been on the case for about a month. Ike's assumption regarding the interview of Jessie was correct, her and that guy were in fact police officers.
The police officers informed Ike that they were going to seize all of his production equipment and anything else that would help them with their case.
Ike was not given the right to be present when they took his belongings, in fact the officers placed Ike in a squad car and sent him to a holding station until the officers took all they wanted or needed.
An hour or so later the officers all returned to the station and Ike was escorted by detective Garrett to the Saint Louis County Police Justice Services building located in Clayton, Missouri.
Ike asked where is his list of things that were taken from his studio and the Detective informed Ike that the list was left at his studio on the kitchen counter. Ike then asked what were some of the things that the officers took.
Detective Garrett told Ike that they took 4 cameras, 2 Sony Dcr-VX2000 Mini Dv Digital Camcorders / 1 Sony Dsc-F707 5 Mega Pixel Digital Still Picture Camera and 1 Sony Dsc-F717 5 Mega Pixel Digital Still Picture Camera, a lighting kit, computers , tapes and a lot of other things, too many items to run down.
So in other words Ike has been put out of business temporarily without being convicted.
Ike was booked and charged with Promoting Prostitution in the 2nd degree and Patronizing Prostitution and was held on a $25.000.00 bond.
Upon Ike making bond 3 weeks later he arrives to his studio and realizes that he had been evicted.
First Amendment Attorney Robert Herman is on the case and Ike's next court date is scheduled for May 12, 2004.
Please feel free to share this story with anyone you choose as Ike wants to get the word out to as many people and adult industry family members as possible.
Check back often for updates and details.
You may Instant Message Ike directly
Yahoo = Playas_Ent
AIM = Stl Playa Ike