Columbus denies vice cops violated rights of strip club dancers

Ohio

Officers say they weren't retaliating and had probable cause

A gavel and books sitting on a table.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Ohio’s capital city argues a federal court should dismiss a lawsuit by strip club dancers who allege malicious prosecution by two Columbus officers from a since-disbanded vice unit.

Six women allege Kahoots Gentlemen’s Club was targeted in retaliation for firing a bouncer who claimed to work with police.

The women were charged under a state law banning dancers from touching patrons. The charges were later dismissed.

In a court filing Tuesday, the city acknowledged the vice unit was warned that police didn’t qualify as patrons for enforcing that law. But the city denies that the officers violated the women’s rights and that city policies or practices led to anyone being charged without probable cause.

The officers say they weren’t retaliating and had probable cause.

The dancers are seeking damages.

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