HPD undercover officer faces second sexual misconduct claim

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - An HPD undercover officer accused of abusing his authority during a prostitution sting faces yet another misconduct claim.

Officer Paul Goo was one of the arresting officers during a raid at the China Doll Spa near Ala Moana last November. In his report, he said the suspect got on top of him and placed her mouth on his genitals.

"He allowed her ... to place a condom in her mouth and place it on him and then straddled him and got on him," said Bill Harrison, the attorney for the woman.

"She claims that he actually had sex with her."

Harrison said he plans to file a complaint with police internal affairs.

"Our clients tell us it happens all the time," said Harrison.

This is the second time that Goo has been accused of sexual misconduct.

In February, Goo arrested a woman at the VIP Lounge on Keeaumoku Street but not before he allowed her to kiss him on the neck and fondle his genitals. The woman alleges that Goo masturbated just before he arrested her.

"The fact is, Officer Goo has a pattern of sexually assaulting these women," said attorney Myles Breiner, who represents the second woman.

"I don't think that Officer Goo should be involved in this type of investigation and his behavior should be restricted."

On Tuesday, HPD officials said Goo has been cleared of any wrongdoing and that HPD forbids its vice officers from having sex with prostitutes. Here's what a high-ranking official said at a Tuesday news conference:

"We have reviewed the cases and found absolutely no misconduct," said Deputy Chief Marie McCauley.

"We currently have zero pending investigations involving officer misconduct relating to prostitution arrests."

But in light of today's disclosure, HPD officials now say they will review the case to see if an investigation is warranted.

The controversy over Goo's behavior comes after an embarrassing few months for HPD, which asked lawmakers for a legal exemption to allow undercover officers to have sex with prostitutes. That measure failed under intense public pressure.

Under Hawaii law, police only need to obtain a verbal contract of sex in exchange for money before they can make a prostitution arrest. But in both cases, Goo states that he had extensive physical contact with the women he arrested.

When asked about what's considered inappropriate, HPD officials declined comment.

"We cannot discuss strategies and tactics and that would include what is and is not permissible as far as undercover conduct," HPD Major Jerry Inouye of the Narcotics/Vice Division said on Tuesday.

"If we give this information, it would give the upper hand to the defendant and possibly to the pimps as to what they need to do to avoid detection and apprehension."

Breiner said the police department needs to overhaul its policies. He noted that male undercover officers are allowed to make sexual contact with suspected prostitutes while female undercover officers rarely ever take their clothes off when they arrest a john.

"Any arrest that Officer Goo participated in should be examined on whether or not the authorities should proceed," he said.

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