Is It Too Much to Ask That Sex Offenders Don’t Have Sex In Public Parks?


Oh gays and their outdoor cruising: Whenever will we learn that wooded areas, rest stops, and bridge underpasses are not the best ways to get our rocks off? Twenty-eight men in Washington State just learned the hard way: They were arrested for sexin’ it in a public park.

An undercover investigation probably suitable for Dateline nabbed the 28 fellas in the past week after police, with nothing better to do than troll Craigslist (yes, really), noticed one too many postings on the site about hooking up in Spanaway Lake Park, northeast of Olympia and described by the state’s Parks & Recreation Department as “extremely popular with many year-round activities.”

Why raid the park for guys having consensual sex? Because they’re doing it near families and kids. Meanwhile, while arresting the public lewdness types, “[i]nvestigators have found three mattresses, pornography and other sexual paraphernalia in the woods at the park. Among those arrested were registered sex offenders and a man who is HIV-positive.”

Okay, that’s pretty gross (the mattress and sex offenders part). Listen, we know there are plenty of married guys out there who want to keep the wife and kids while getting their nut off with a stranger in the woods. But stay away from places where kids play, okay? Even if you’re deep into the woods.

Especially now, knowing you’re in the company of sex offenders. Because really, ew.

(Spanaway Lake Park photo via)

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #crime #cruising #parks stories and more


  • Jaroslaw

    sure public sex is kind of crude, but i find it more than a bit hypocritical that people are so worried about kids seeing people have sex, but don’t mind horrendous cruelty to our food animals, letting kids see all kinds of murder & mayhem on TV and finally I think we SHOULD see the horrors of war, not sanitized photos and maybe we wouldn’t be so quick to send our young men & women to war. Long sentence sorry.

  • Fitz

    Zero sympathy for people who are so selfish that they turn a public park into their own playground. Go to a fuckin video booth or sex club, if you that is what you want.

  • Fitz

    @Jaroslaw: I don’t know which parks you go to, but the ones in my area don’t tend to have slaughter houses or armed combat.

  • ThatguyFromBoston

    Although, I think armed combat and a slaughter house would make for a great national park.

  • M Shane

    @No. 1 ยท Jaroslaw point well taken.. There iis very little concern about children learning maiming and mayhem from films and games. Likely correspods to the cruelty of our wars and schools.
    Interestingly, in this case the point is mote entoirely, since the police didn’t discover the incidents from complains from parents or kids, but rather discovered them by looking at :”craigs list”which demonstrates a degree of prudery above and beyond he call of duty..

    In those parks where the activity is a hamprerance to childrens activities , there would be a point to such ‘crackdowns, otherwise is seems to be censorius and homophobic.. I wonder if they are as aggressive at attacking the heterosexual “lobvers lanes which exist ubiquitously in all cities.

  • M Shane

    This write -up sounds like it came directly fronm the Religious Family Center for Godly Behavior! And they clainm that Assimilationism is not the issue in Gay Politics.
    Odd when the Gays join right up with the right wing who hate them. This will only work when you opt for sex alteration therapy. Good move Queerty.

  • Cam

    @M Shane: You said “This write -up sounds like it came directly fronm the Religious Family Center for Godly Behavior! And they clainm that Assimilationism is not the issue in Gay Politics.”

    Can we for a second stop pretending that fucking out in public is some sort of thousand year old gay cultural institution. This went on because hotels wouldn’t rent to gays, people couldn’t be seen bringing another man back to their apt. etc… The fact that times have changed and you have a generation or two growing up without those restrictions is of course going to result in a change of opinions on that type of activity. You aren’t hearing “Assimilationist speech” here, you are hearing the comments of people that never have been refused a motel room, or who couldn’t bring a guy home to their own apt. Sex in parks used to be an act of defiance….now it seems more like the act of desperate married guys afraid to come out.

  • dvlaries

    This is simply a question of manners.

    When you arrogantly privatize public space for the most intimate of activities -gay or straight- then be prepared for whatever the consequences and shut up.

  • Jaroslaw

    M Shane – thanks for the comment and I meant to say the same thing that you did – getting the info from Craig’s list. Glad to know there aren’t any other crimes going unsolved there.

    There was a similar incident many years ago in my state – The “sex club” occurred after midnight, WAY behind the park, up a hill etc. I don’t know who tipped off the police – but from all reports and newsphotos of the area, no child accidentally ambled up there….. I would think on a school night at that time of day they should be asleep in their own bed at home!

  • Jaroslaw

    Dvlaries – you were typing while I was typing so your comment beat mine or I would have answered yours also – I know where you’re coming from, but do you really think the police have time for this sort of thing? DIGGING up the info from Craigslist, rather than public complaints? And even if the public complains, does this complaint outweigh home burglaries, rape, murder? My house was broken into SIX times and I lost irreplaceable things. Observing sexual activity doesn’t come close to the violation one feels with a break in. You’re afraid to go to sleep, you can’t concentrate while you’re away at work, you hate to go home, thinking you’ll find another break in…..

  • Jaroslaw

    Sorry to be a comment hog – one more thing. Another reason police often concentrate on this sort of thing – it is easy, low risk, a source of revenue and it is the negative “high profile” kind of thing that makes the public think they’re doing something about “safety”. Solving arsons & murders and doing to grunt work to build community/neighborhood policing – that’s hard work.

  • RomanHans

    This is offensive! This is patently wrong! Our public parks exist so that Hispanics will have a place to play their boomboxes really loud, and police MUST remove anything that hampers them.

  • stevenelliot

    AH?? again AH??? The “sex-offender” list is filled with the names of men who have done nothing other than be caught having sex, or soliciting sex in a public domain. IE a park, or airport restroom (Larry Craig). Sex-offender does not equal pedophile……it only implies it.

    Sex-offender is a term that is used for these gentlemen, as well as anyone who has sex with a minor. SO you see. Even if you like your sex public and annoymous and with other consenting adults if you get arrested in that act you will be deemed a sex offender. Ironically if a couple of straights were doing that in the park I bet they would simply be sent packing and not arrested.

    While I do not condone this activity, I find it a bit disheartening that Queerty so easily fell into the conservative trap of labeling these men as such without knowing what their previous crimes actually were.

  • Henry Holland

    Never got the whole “bush baby” thing, I always found it difficult to get hard when the fear of getting busted > name printed in paper > lose job etc. was hanging over me.

    Cam @ #7: excellent, hard to argue with that.

  • schlukitz


    Copy on all of your comments.

    Um…didn’t Adam and Eve “do it” in the woods and just what Year of the Lord was it that “doing it” in the woods became a sin?

    You know, we really need to get after all of those lewd, exhibitionistic bears, raccoons, skunks, deer and rabbits that are committing these shameful, indecent and sinful sexual acts in our parks. Especially if there are kids nearby. It could traumatize them for life.

    Oh, and btw, I lost lost count of all the straight couples I stumbled across in Central Park who were “doing it” when I used to cruise Belvedere Castle, “Hungry Hill” and “Gulpers Gulch” on a Sunday afternoon.

    The difference was, the straights were doing it right out in the open (and no one uttered a word about it), while the gays had to hide in the bushes to do the very same thing.

    What fools these mortals be.

  • Fitz

    Don’t believe the fat, sexless, loveless people who try to confuse being queer-positive with thinking that everything is ok everywhere everytime.

  • Jayson

    I always find it odd, that the police spend so much time, money and effort on these types of things, like putting police ladies out on the stroll, to arrest johns. I guess it’s easier to arrest horny men, then to actually stop drug deals or whatever.

  • schlukitz


    You and Jedgar would have made perfect drinking buddies.

  • schlukitz


    Not only is it easier, it’s safer…and bring in lots of money for both the police (fines) and the lawyers (fees) who defend the “poipetrators”.

    When you get right down to basics, the “Justice system” is a money-making institution too, just like the “Choich”. ;o)

  • Fitz

    @schlukitz: I don’t drink. But I do fuck– but I don’t do it in the god-damn park.

  • schlukitz


    Hmm…maybe that’s your problem. You probably do it with the lights off, with your jamies on and under a sheet/blanket so as not to offend anyone’s sensibilities, including your own!

    A good fuck in the park (or any wooded area, for that matter) might help you to become a more well-rounded, open-minded individual instead of the up-tight, self-righteous, proper Christian stuffed-shirt you come off sounding like.

    Take a couple of deep breaths and let it all hang-out, girlfriend! You’ll feel so much better. LOL

  • Fitz

    @schlukitz: I have several fun people to play with, thanks– plus this is SF, and tops just have to stick there thumb out, and there are 30 bottoms in line. I resent your implication that because I am not selfish enough to think that every public space is my play space that I am somehow a prude. Dude– you so clearly don’t know me for shit. My “up-tight, self-righteous, proper Christian stuffed-shirt” ethics include the belief that there is a place for all of us. I am happy to fuck around at BB or SW or wherever.. but the parks for all of us.

  • schlukitz


    You’re right. I don’t know you from Jack-Shitt! I can only base my opinions on the things you post and that is the way they come-off sounding. Sorry if I offend you personally.

    I support your right to fuck around at BB or SW or whatever. I have absolutely no “opinion” or judgment about that. If that’s what makes you happy, then by all means, do it!

    But when you get all soap-boxy about how other people like to express their sexuality, then it is you who are being judgmental and that does sound very Christian-like to my ears.

    All I can say is, you go to your “Church” and I’ll go to “mine”. lol

  • Jaroslaw

    What is SW & BB?

  • dizzyspins

    Oh please, I am so sick of people making excuses for public-sex arrests: “Dont the police have better things to do,” “kids see violence on TV,” “its part of gay culture.” Grow up and go on Manhunt like everyone else!

    As a gay man, I would like to walk through a park without hearing catcalls, being propositioned or seeing used condoms. And given how many murders/assaults/robberies result in such cruising, its unsafe.

    I’d also like to use a public bathroom for the purpose it was intended w/o worrying about whats going on in the stalls. And lets not pretend it doesnt encourage a generally unsavory/unsafe atmosphere

  • schlukitz


    Local bars, porno shops or baths, perhaps?

  • schlukitz


    If your “legitimate” reason for using a public bathroom was to take a well-needed piss or dump, why would you be “worrying” about what’s going on in the stalls? Hmm?

  • Grey

    @stevenelliot: You make a very important point that often gets forgotten in stories about “sex offenders.” These registry lists are overly broad and overly vague. Not all of the people on these lists are child molesters, rapists, or violent sexual predators. Some of them are quite innocent of anything serious. You read stories of college guys getting arrested for streaking at midnight on a college campus and being forced to register as a sex offender — but when you look at the lists, it doesn’t distinguish between their “crime” and that of a child molesters’. And then they, of course, get swept up in the hysteria of protecting kids and demanding that people on sex offender registries live more than 2,000 feet of schools when their crimes don’t suggest the remotest interest in kids.

  • schlukitz


    And given how many murders/assaults/robberies result in such cruising, its unsafe.

    Ah yes. I meant to address myself to that comment. Shouldn’t the police be addressing themselves to those criminal issues, instead of beating the bushes looking for the victims of such crime to arrest them instead?

    I will certainly agree with you that placing one’s self in a space where such things can happen is not the smartest decision, but are you saying that being murdered, assaulted or robbed is justified and fair treatment for a minor public sexual offense?

    It sounds like what you are trying to say, is that the gays are the cause of murder, assaults and robberies in public parks and therefore, they make it unsafe for others like yourself?

    If that doesn’t sound like a typical, insane, blame the victim statement, I don’t know what does?

  • schlukitz


    This happened to a gay friend of mine who was a schoolteacher in the State of Michigan.

    This happened over ten years ago and he no longer a registered sex-offender in that state, but will be listed as one here in the State of Florida for the rest of his life, if he chooses to remain here.

  • Jaroslaw

    Dizzyspins – if possible, please re-read the posts here again. Most of us are not advocating for in-your-face public sex in the park; simply saying (a) straight folk are not tarred & feathered for life like we are for the same thing and (b)I don’t think the police have time to be checking Craiglist LOOKING for a problem when one doesn’t appear to exist. If they have that much time on their hands, I assume all other crime is taken care of. That is not an “excuse” that is called PRIORITZING.

    Schuklitz – another wrinkle in the sex offender thing – in Michigan two adults having consensual non-prostitutional sex in a Gay bar bathroom stall (uh, remember you have to be over 21 to be in the bar at all) can be tagged as sex offenders. Perhaps not the smartest place to have sex, but they’re hardly a danger to children.

  • Fitz

    @Jaroslaw: Steam Works and Blow Buddies. Two fun places to fuck around where you don’t impinge on other people.

  • RainaWeather

    HAVE SEX IN YOUR HOUSE!!! Problem solved.

  • schlukitz


    HAVE SEX IN YOUR HOUSE!!! Problem solved.

    Um…not really…

    Some questions:

    With the shades up….or down?

    With the windows open or closed?

    Daytime or nighttime?

    Lights on or off?

    Are Sundays appropriate for sex?

    Are grunts and groans of pleasure permissible?

    What about the kids? Send them to a movie or what?

    Can visitors be present?

    Should the dog/cat be inside or outside?

    Porno videos ok while having sex?

    Are fetish acts that neighbors can hear acceptable? You know, whips, cat-o-nine tails, stuff like that?

    I’m concerned about all of the above because it is not my wish to impinge on anyone, you see.

  • schlukitz


    We had all that in NYC; at one time.

    Then the good Christian folks started complaining and our mayor closed the baths, the sex-clubs and the leather bars down. HIV, you know.

    All of the the cruisy movies around town are gone. The meat-rack in Washington Square is gone. The piers are gone. Riverside Park is a no-no. Grant’s Tomb is a no-no. Central Park is out of the question and Times Square now looks as sanitized as Disneyland. Ugh.

    Christopher Street, which once was the heart of the gay ghetto and very cruisy, got gentrified and has been taken over by the baby-buggy crowd and all of the gays retreated to Eighth Avenue in Chelsea to escape the sky-high rents in the Village which have become just as God-awful there.

    It’s only a matter of time before the Chelsea baby-buggy crowd objects to all of the gay bars, restaurants stores and establishments that uplifted a shabby, dreary-looking street tht nobody wanted, just like Christopher Street before the gays got there.

    Same old story, repeated over and over, ad nauseum across the entire USA.

    They love how we live, but they don’t like what we do, no matter where we do it!

  • Jaroslaw

    For those who are unaware life did not start with the USA and prude Christian morality, there actually was a culture in Greece several hundred years ago where men could whip it out and masturbate whenever they got ready.

    Frankly, if it would end wars, I would gladly trade people humping in the streets for it. I am NOT advocating sex WITH children nor have I ever had sex with children. But when a child cuts his finger or whatever happens, the REACTION of the adult almost always effects how the child reacts. If the adult goes crazy, so will the child. I saw this over and over in my life. My grandfather had a renter family where the wife was so wound up, spacey and frightened when a tornado came, the 12 year old babysitter had to shepherd the family to the basement. All you had to do with the 10 year old girl was say “monsters under the bed” and she would scream almost uncontrollably.

    I’m not really advocating public sex but for the people so opposed to it, I want to know: is everything so cut and dried for you? Aren’t there a million worse things in life than public sex?

  • schlukitz


    It’s certainly odd, isn’t it, that war and all of it’s attendant horrors, violence, murder, pillaging and sacking entire villages while raping men, women and children does not upset anyone (we see it on tv and movies constantly), but mention public sex and they become like the 10 year old girl you mentioned in your post, getting all spacey, frightened and screaming uncontrollably.

    The entire animal kingdom is having public sex all around us.

    Shall we put bears in jockstraps and hand them tickets for “exposing” themselves in public?

    Shall we put the the steed that mounts a mare in the pasture on a farm in solitary confinement for it’s actions?

    Let’s fine the Gibbon or Baboon at the zoo who masturbates unabashedly in public and in front of little children.

    Why is it ok for animals to have sex in public (and in front of little children), but it’s not ok for humans, who are also part of the animal kingdom, to have sex in public?

    Is this an insame dichotomy or what?

  • Fitz

    @schlukitz: We lost most of our fun spots too.. (ahhhhh… loading dock….my place…..) But the progressive politics around here have, so far, kept the straight-up sex clubs safe. (i.e. not the ones posing as book stores).

  • AlwaysGay

    Heterosexual police let heterosexuals have sex in public.
    Go to videovigilanteokc on YouTube to watch video of heterosexuals having sex in public.

  • RainaWeather

    @Jaroslaw: Just because there are wore things happening doesn’t make public sex in the park okay. The murder, theft, abuse, etc., rate is irrelevant to this topic.

  • RainaWeather

    Well, I see some people here are speaking in more idealistic terms than I had realized. So in a perfect world, sex in a park on a Sunday afternoon is fine. But I don’t know if most people are ready for that.

  • Jaroslaw

    Rainaweather – can you read? You’ve missed my points entirely.

  • schlukitz


    Rainaweather’s wndshield wipers are apparently not working. LOL

  • Jaroslaw

    Thanks S – I see that a lot here. We don’t have to agree, but people don’t even try to understand another point of view so often.

  • RainaWeather

    @Jaroslaw: Well why don’t you explain your point in very plain terms for me?

  • RainaWeather

    Contrary to what you believe I really would like to understand your point (since you think I don’t).

  • MackMichael

    “when I used to cruise Belvedere Castle, “Hungry Hill” and “Gulpers Gulch” on a Sunday afternoon.”

    I barely survived the discussion of Bathhouses, so I will just relent entirely and settle for reading everyone else opine, with the exception of the above. Now, I never had sex in the Park, but as a boy, from what I remember, Belvedere Castle, Hungry Hill and Gulper’s Gulch always had the longest lines at Disneyland resort, so I would imagine that there would be hundreds of kids in these areas who might catch a glimpse of the sex going on around these popular attractions at the Park…it’s a Small World, after all.

  • schlukitz


    LOL at your comments about a Small World.

    You have to remember that this was pre-Stonewall days, so we didn’t have many choices of where to meet other gays except in Mafia owned bars or cruisy theaters on 42nd Street and I never liked to drink alcohol. Everything was pretty much underground in the late fifties and early sixties.

    Actually, all of the places I mentioned were pretty well off the beaten track in Central Park and not frequented by children. Horny yes. Exhibitionists we were NOT. And only a few gay people who could not bring someone home for one reason or another, actually used them to have sex.

    Most of the cruising went on in a big open field called the “Rambles” where guys brought picnic baskets and blankets to spend the afternoon there and get a sun tan in the process.

    Young and poor, I often went there with friends. Sunday Afternoon in the Park was a cheap way to pass the time. Those were nice times, as I recall them. Met lots of nice guys there and made a few lifetime friends as well.

  • MackMichael

    Hi Schultz: I am so not entering the debate about sex in the park, but I hope you didn’t mind me poking a little fun at the names of the various meeting places at the park. They just did sound a bit like those given to attractions at a theme park, like Disneyland, but I would not wish to offend. ;o)

  • schlukitz


    Oh, absolutely not. I did not mind in the least your poking some good-natured fun at the names of the various meeting places in the park. I always thought that they were rather hysterical names.

    I have always enjoyed being around people with a sense of humor, and obviously, you have one. ;o) Absolutely no offense was taken, I assure you.

    Incidentally, I very much enjoy reading your interesting commentaries and am eagerly looking forward to seeing more of them. Please feel free to interact with any of the commentaries I post. I enjoy a good discussion on a wide variety of topics. :)

    Take care now.

  • cls

    Public sex, not so smart. Assuming that you know anything about someone because they are listed as a “sex offender” is really dumb. Taking a pee on the roadside can make you a sex offender. Students who streaked were told they could be sex offenders. Kids who plays a slap on the butt game (just slapping each other running by) were up for sex offender status. A man who stole a credit card was listed as a sex offender merely because he hired a stripper with the card. They said that made it an offense carried out for sexual purpose. Teens who have sex with each other can be classified as sex offenders for life.

    When you see that someone is a “sex offender” you may want to think they raped two year old kids. But the law doesn’t see it that way. In fact everyone of the men arrested could be eligible for sex offender status. In the antisexual atmosphere of today it doesn’t make much to be a sex offender any more.

  • rudy

    @cls: Yep.
    Our local cops busted in on an 18 year old boy in bed with his 16 year old girl friend on Friday, and he may get 20 years.
    When I first saw the headline and his jail photo, I thought this was a gay story and HE was the victim. [img][/img]

  • Jaroslaw

    Rudy- the link you provided doesn’t work.

    Rainaweather – you say rape & murder aren’t relevant to this topic. I don’t know how I will explain my point to you since you don’t seem to comprehend what you read, but I will try.

    1. I never said sex in the park was the greatest thing, but neither do I think it will cause irreparable harm to children. Children face many issues in this world such as crappy parenting, crappy schools and all kinds of abuse and neglect. Do you have any idea how many children are in foster care? How many children have protective services? I hardly hear a word about this on the news, but sex in the park seems to get people all excited.

    2. Perhaps I should have put this first: do you believe the police have unlimited resources and unlimited budgets? If not, then where should the priorities be? Should they be spending time LOOKING for problems on Craiglist or are there enough other problems which are self evident?

  • Fitz

    The equation seems to be: if you are socially responsible, then you are a sexual prude with internalized homophobia. I question both the accuracy of this, and the motivation for it.

  • schlukitz



    There are numerous reasons for this ridiculous obsession about sex in the park. The three most prominent ones would be homophobia, religious hang-ups about sex in general and police departments who target “Craig’s List” and “sex-in-the-park” “criminal” activities because they are the least dangerous to pursue.

    Gays don’t carry guns and shoot policemen.

    It also lulls the populace into believing that the police departments are “doing their job”, “earning their salaries” and “protecting them (and their precious little kiddies) from horrible criminal types”.

    People love to delude themselves into a false sense of security.

    Dumb fucks.

  • schlukitz


    “Socially responsible?”

    What the fuck are you smoking?

    If you are so obsessed with social responsibility, they why aren’t you a member of a police department, BCI or the FBI and fighting to reduce the level of serious crimes like drug dealing, rapes, gay-bashing and a murder rate that is sky-rocketing in America?

    You piously think that by refraining from having sex-in-the-park that you are being a good, little, responsible citizen and that the world will be a safer place if we lock-up all the gays who have sex-in-the-park?

    What deluded dream world do you live in, buster?

  • Chitown Kev

    On this issue, we agree.

    Hell, I’ve seen straights get it on in gay cruising spots, for that matter. But it’s not a problem when they do it.

  • Jaroslaw

    Fitz – look at some history. The police have spent countless zillions of dollars over the years trying to bust Gay people – have you ever heard of the Stonewall riots in NYC?

    Uusually the bar or club had doors locked to the public, you had to know someone to get it; guys would dance together etc. and if the police came they had to quickly switch partners to girls and sometimes were busted anyway. It was illegal for a girl (lesbian) to wear men’s clothing etc.

    So, this story is right in line with that – we have a several hundred year history of that stuff, right here in this country. Read Byrne Fone’s book HOMOPHOBIA.

Comments are closed.