Democrat Was In Strip Club During 1998 Raid


By John Celock

The Democratic nominee for Kansas governor is finding himself on the defensive following a report Saturday morning that he was present in a strip club during a 1998 drug raid.

The Coffeyville Journal reported Saturday that Democratic nominee Paul Davis was in a strip club in Coffeyville during an Aug. 5, 1998 drug raid. The newspaper, which extensively quoted a police report from the Montgomery County sheriff’s office, reported that Davis was interacting with a scantily clad stripper when the raid occurred. Davis told police at the time that he was an attorney for the owner of the club, which he repeated to Politico on Saturday afternoon.

“I noticed a white male sitting on a couch with a white female standing over him,” the police report reads according to the Coffeyville Journal. “She was apparently a dancer in the club, because she did not have her top on and was only wearing a G-string. I told them to get on the floor and to keep their hands where I could see them. They got on the floor, but the white male was still in a sitting position. I told him again to lay on his stomach, and to keep his hands where I could see them. At this time he did so, and when he got on the floor he advised me that he was the attorney for the owner of the club and he wanted to see him. I told him that he would have to wait until things were secured.”

The report said that Davis asked a police detective on scene that he wanted to see the club’s owner and that he was an attorney, but the detective said he would have to wait. The report also said that Davis and other customers were searched by police before being told to leave. The Coffeyville Journal reports that Davis was not charged with possessing drugs and was not arrested during the raid.

Davis, the state House minority leader, is narrowly leading Gov. Sam Brownback (R) in a competitive race.

The Coffeyville Journal, which does not have a website broke the story Saturday morning. The Celock Report posted tweets about the news shortly after Noon Eastern Time. Politico reported a statement from Davis explaining the situation around 2 p.m. eastern time on Saturday. In the statement to Politico, Davis reiterated that he was an attorney for the club’s owner but does not address the report that said he was receiving what appeared to be a lap dance in the description. The police report indicated that Davis was wearing shorts and a pull over shirt.

“When I was 26 years old, I was taken to a club by my boss – the club owner was one of our legal clients,” Davis said in the statement to Politico. “While we were in the building, the police showed up. I was never accused of having done anything wrong, but rather I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

Davis also said that people should be focused on a reported FBI investigation into a Brownback advisor on fundraising and lobbying accusations instead of the strip club report.

Davis’ campaign did not respond to a request for comment.

The revelation comes as Kansas lawmakers have considered a bill over the previous several years to ban strip clubs in the state. In 2011, Davis voted against the strip club ban, which did pass the GOP-controlled House at the time but died in the state Senate. In 2013, the bill did not receive a vote by the state House. Davis told the Topeka Capitol-Journal at the time that the Legislature didn’t need to be focused on the issue.

“The Legislature is probably intruding in areas where we don’t need to be,” Davis told the Capitol-Journal at the time. “We’ve got a lot more important things that we need to be dealing with here.”

Kansas Republicans issued a statement Saturday saying that Kansans should question Davis’ past behavior when voting for governor. Kansas Republican Party executive director Clay Barker noted that Davis had said during a Friday debate with Brownback that past behavior is an example of future behavior. He also noted that earlier this month that Davis had to pull a television commercial after the actor in the commercial was found to have been banned from being a Boy Scout leader after accusations of inappropriate sexual behavior with a minor.

“Paul Davis said at Friday’s Johnson County Governor’s debate that ‘I think that the best example of future behavior is past behavior.’ Davis’ behavior – whatever he was doing to or with that woman in the ‘VIP room’ while his client was dealing meth in the bar – demonstrates a total lack of judgment and is the kind of behavior that Kansans will find totally unacceptable in someone who wants to be governor,” Barker said in the statement. “In just the past two weeks, we have learned that Paul Davis has chosen to surround himself with meth dealers and sexual deviants. I think the question all Kansans want to know is, what else are you hiding, Paul?”