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Five police officers involved in the arrest of adult film star Stormy Daniels at an Ohio strip club last summer now face the possibility of being fired.
The Columbus, Ohio, officers violated the Columbus Division of Police rules of conduct, according to a police news release, when they arrested Daniels in an undercover operation as part of the now disbanded vice unit. Within hours of Daniels’ arrest, all charges were dropped because she didn’t regularly appear at the club.
The officers face anything from a reprimand to termination. Their fate is ultimately up to the director of public safety following a recommendation made by the police chief.
Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, was arrested at the Sirens Gentlemen's Club in Columbus on July 11, 2018, following one of her performances. She was charged on three misdemeanor counts, including inappropriately touching a customer’s breast and hitting other patrons in the face with her own breasts.
But Daniels’ arrest is thought to have been premeditated in an attempt to damage her credibility in statements she made against President Trump, according to whistleblower emails between Columbus detectives and vice officers. A scandal broke in January 2018 that revealed Stormy had received $130,000 in hush money from Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, shortly before the 2016 election to keep quiet about her alleged affair with Trump in 2006.
The emails revealed plans of Daniels’ appearance in Columbus, including maps to the strip club, photos of Daniels with Trump, and videos of her dancing.
In March, however, an internal investigation by the Columbus police settled that the arrests weren’t politically motivated but that they were “improper."
In January, Daniels filed a $2 million civil rights lawsuit against the members of the vice unit involved in her arrest. She’s arguing the officers plotted her arrest for being vocal about her sexual encounters with the president. Three of the five officers now facing disciplinary measures are mentioned in the lawsuit.
Cover image: In this Oct. 11, 2018, file photo, adult film actress Stormy Daniels attends the opening of the adult entertainment fair 'Venus' in Berlin, Germany. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)