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News Release

Tuesday, February 4, 2003

Media Relations

Solicit a Street Prostitute; Lose Your Vehicle


Who: Los Angeles Police Department Chief of Police William J. Bratton, Los Angeles City Council Member Tom LaBonge, Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo, Captain Mike Downing, Commanding Officer of Hollywood Area

What: Press Event Regarding Los Angeles Municipal Code Section Aimed at Curbing Street Prostitution

When: Thursday, February 20, 2003, at 3:30 p.m.

Where: Hollywood Area Police Station 1358 N. Wilcox Avenue, Hollywood

Los Angeles: Effective February 9, 2003, the City of Los Angeles will begin enforcing the newly enacted Los Angeles Municipal Code Section 41.70, which provides for the seizure and forfeiture of vehicles used by persons who solicit or attempt to solicit an act of prostitution. Additionally, the law allows the seizure of vehicles used by persons who are caught loitering for the purposes of soliciting an act of prostitution.

For many decades, Los Angeles City residents have complained about the nuisance created in their neighborhoods by those persons who drive around their communities for the purpose of soliciting acts of prostitution.

The message is simple. Should you decide to drive into the City of Los Angeles and solicit a street prostitute, you will lose all rights to your vehicle, as it will be declared a nuisance. It will be seized and sold by the City. Captain Mike Downing, Commanding Officer of Hollywood Area issued a warning to those "would be" solicitors of street prostitutes: "You come in on your wheels, we’ll put you on your heels."

This particular act of seizing the vehicles of those who solicit street prostitutes is a problem-solving tool that has been used, and proven to be effective, in many northern California Cities. We believe this new law will drastically impact the demand for this quality of life crime, which brings blight and disorder into many neighborhoods throughout our City.

Our gratitude is extended to Los Angeles City Mayor James Hahn, Los Angeles City Council Members (particularly Council Member Tom LaBonge) the Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners and Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo for responding to this call for assistance from the residents of Los Angeles

This advisory was prepared by Public Information Officer Adriana N. Sanchez, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.