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Prostitution penalty changes (new law)

Published (5/29/2009)
By Mike Cook
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Prostitution penalties are toughened and definitions have been clarified.

Effective Aug. 1, 2009, a new law makes prostitution arrest information more accessible.

Under current law, a crime of engaging in prostitution goes on a person’s record, but not on a person’s driving record. That makes it hard for law enforcement personnel to access the data from their in-car computer if a person is using a motor vehicle to patronize prostitutes.

A loophole is closed in the law where a second violation was enhanced if the first violation was a misdemeanor, but not enhanced if the first was a gross misdemeanor.

It also makes a definitional change to “place of public accommodation,” to enhance the penalty for prostitution in a public place, and amends the public place prostitution crime by replacing current language to make it identical to that in the other prostitution crimes.

Rep. Melissa Hortman (DFL-Brooklyn Park) and Sen. Patricia Torres Ray (DFL-Mpls) sponsor the law.


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