The Ridiculous Attempt By Palm Springs Police to Get Public Park Cruisers Registered as Sex Offenders

Should getting your rocks off in a public park get you spanked for life by being forced to register as a sex offender? Palm Springs police in California would like it that way.

Last year’s sting of the Warm Sands area snagged 24 alleged offenders, and new documents show that leading up to the sweep the police were hoping the district attorney’s office would severely punish the park sex hopefuls.

Prior to the Warm Sands sting, Palm Springs police made it clear to the Riverside County D.A.’s Office they were dissatisfied with the “disturbing the peace” pleas that came from previous stings, according to sworn testimony from Palm Springs police Sgt. Bryan Anderson, who helped supervise the Warm Sands sting. The police reached out to Supervising Deputy District Attorney Trisha Fransdahl prior to the sting. Anderson said he was confident they had an agreement in place to pursue “the charges that we actually asked to file.” The Palm Springs Police Department declined to comment on the Warm Sands sting. It’s not clear why it sought more severe penalties from the D.A. in advance.

“Not clear”? We have some theories.

In the meantime, while the D.A. insists there was never a firm deal in place to prosecute offenders under such a severe law, the 24 men do stand to be added to a sex offender’s registry if convicted — but only one that’s available to police, and not the public.

But how come it’s only the gays enjoying public sex that are facing such harsh penalties?

Indio-based public defender Roger Tansey aims to get a Riverside County Superior Court judge to compel the police to reveal details about their enforcement during the past 10 years. Tansey submitted earlier this month testimony from two former security guards — including one who patrolled Knott’s Soak City water park in Palm Springs — who said they witnessed rampant straight sex in public while on the job. Tessa Smith said she observed 15 to 20 couples engaged in public inappropriate sexual activity in the two months she served as a security guard at the water park in 2007. Smith, now a Riverside County sheriff’s deputy, said she witnessed two couples having sex in the wading pool. […] Another security guard, Richard Heidorn, said he witnessed 25 to 30 straight couples having sex in the city-owned parking structure north of Baristo Road during a nine-month period in 2009.

The double standard of cracking down on gay vs. straight sex isn’t new, but the Palm Springs police’s attempt to force these men onto sex offender lists is frightening. These lists are used to keep tabs on persons committing sex crimes, not crimes that involve sex. There’s a difference between child rapists and pedophiles and men and women (gay or straight) stupidly using public property to get off with other consenting adults. Adding these men to that list dilutes the purpose of a registry.

We’re just fine with police trying to eliminate public park cruising; if there are families or children also using the park, seriously, go somewhere else. But including a Richard Quest type on a registry reserved for the sickest of human beings (and, apparently, teenagers who sext) is ridiculous and an over-reach.

[Desert News]

A Nova Scotia Mayor Wants to Close a Public Park to Cruising. Here’s Why That’s a Terrible Idea

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  • whatever

    Queerty in a nutshell.

    Obama=evil incarnate

    cruising/public sex=harmless fun

    Got it.

  • JakeH

    @whatever: Its not “harmless fun,” but I do think putting stuff like that on the level of rapists (child or adult) does greatly diminish the sex offenders list … and is going to end up causing those trying to avoid real predators to have more exposure to them.

  • Bruce

    This will never happen because of all the GOP government officials that say gays are sick/troubled getting caught tring to have public sex. It’s easy to say whoops I went into the wrong place or made my stancE to wide, but much harder to sell and buy I’m not a sex offender when you’re on the registry.

  • The Artist

    @whatever: Yikes! Evil Incarnate. Say man, where have you been over the pass few years. Also, married men also need a place to GETT OFF. Maybe they (authorities) should focus their energy on the crime rate. PEACELUVNBWILD!

  • Chitown Kev

    I can’t comment on this thread on the grounds of what I did last night.

    Jeebus, I can be such a slut.

  • Dear Faggy

    Some advice from Dear Faggy:

    Here’s a thought, gay dudes:

    It’s not 1971 any longer. Being gay isn’t a crime or something to be ashamed of. So stop fucking in public places, already. Would you, geezers? It’s bad form, it makes people hate us even more than they already do, and those of you who DO engage in this sick behavior have forced those of us with morals and dignity to live under your ‘all gays are sex fiends’ umbrella. And we don’t like it.

    Seriously. Gay dudes. Start fucking behaving yourselves and show some sexual restraint. It’s not a lot to ask. Unless, as I suspect, those cruising public parks and disgusting toilets are sex addicts are in need of psychological help, and not more cock. (Unless it is true that the gay man’s intention is to fuck himself to death.)

    Stop this foolishness and obtain some dignity. You are an embarrassment to the community.

    The management appreciates you helping us out.

  • whatever

    @Dear Faggy: yeah. the people who do this are doing it because they get off on the thrill of it. in this internet age (gridr, manhunt, craigslist, etc.) and in the day of no-tell, cheapo motels, there is really reason to be doing this in public other than the fetish aspect of it.

    then again, queerty defends incest, so there is really no degeneracy that this too beyond the pale for queerty.

  • Bill Perdue

    @Dear Faggy: Dearest, seek counseling for your internalized homophobia and Victorian fear of sex.

    But not from a priest. (Unless getting poked in the sacristy turns you on.)

  • StudSlut

    I say lock ’em all up. Tired of seeing dirty ol’ dude in thongs sucking other ancient mummies, thinking they’re hot. Have some respect bitches. Leave the cruising to the hot, horny and type-A guys. All rest, go home.

  • StudSlut

    @Bill Perdue: internalized homophobia dude? ur probably one of those gross geezers too

  • Dear Faggy

    No fear of sex or gays. Have been out & proud for 25 years.

    Have fought for YOUR civil rights. Have had my head bashed in for them, sweetheart.

    Absolutely ZERO internalized homophobia, as I believe gays are superior to heterosexuals.

    Just tired of being lumped in with a group of people without the self-respect and dignity to conduct the personal aspects of their lives in private.

    Thanks for playing, though!

    Dear Faggy

  • ossurworld

    Read PARK DWELLERS, a tale about gay cruising.

  • Dear Faggy


    “internalized homophobia dude?”

    When a gay man takes out the ‘internalized homophobia’ arrow, it tends to be ‘gay code’ for ‘I am over 55 years old.’

    Those of us not quite old yet do not subscribe to ‘internalized homophobia.’

    Dear Faggy

  • Bill Perdue

    @Dear Faggy: @Dear Faggy:

    Bingo. Those reactions are proof of internalized homophobia and fear of sex.

  • RomanHans

    Once when I was on jury duty, I heard a case where a policeman saw a man pick up a hooker, and he followed their car to an isolated spot where they had sex. He arrested them for public indecency.

    It took us like eight seconds to decide the guy wasn’t guilty. Because the law says to be publicly indecent you have to be IN PUBLIC. Nobody would have seen the pair have sex if the cop hadn’t followed them.

    So c’mon, let’s be real. Who exactly sees gays having sex in bushes aside from (1) other gays looking for sex, and (2) cops out to bust them? And why shouldn’t we have outdoor places where we can have sex? Kids have Disneyland and Sea World and all that shit. Why can’t we have some small corner of the world? Hell, if it was up to me, dudes would be having sex on Fifth Avenue.

  • Dear Faggy

    @Bill Perdue:

    Love you.

    But you are SOOOOO barking up the wrong tree here, Bill Perdue.

    The type of guys you are looking for can be found at most highway exit restrooms.

    Enjoy them! You deserve them! And they you. But PLEEEEAAAASSSSE stop embarrassing and humiliating the rest of us. Perhaps you could AT LEAST wait to engage in the anal aspect of your fucking until you get to the in of doors? That seems to be what people find scariest.

    Again, management appreciates you helping us out!

    Sorry, I need to go sit in my quiet space and properly hate myself while I don’t masturbate.

    Dear Faggy

  • Bill Perdue

    @Dear Faggy: Your defensiveness tells it all.

  • Dear Faggy


    Nice fantasy. Hot even.

    But not the way polite society operates, dear heart.

    You’re welcome!

    Dear Faggy

  • Dear Faggy

    @Bill Perdue:

    Oy vey.

  • scott ny'er

    I don’t think public sex is cool for homos or heteros. If the police are being discriminatory in who they arrest, that’s plain wrong.

  • jmac

    Get over it str8 & Gay people have sex everywhere seen plenty of str8 sex in publc even in family friendly parks etc. So it is not just gays.Treat it all the same.no need to go on sex offenders list which is the issue

  • Pygar

    I’m glad I don’t know any of you douche bags.

  • truthteller

    @Dear Faggy:
    Jesus faggy. You’re a phobe all around! Take a look at your inner-self for crying out loud.
    Now you hate people oder than you? Using derogatory and demeaning language against others to make yourself feel superior is a clear sign of self-loathing.

    You should be respectful of those older than you and you should hope to make it to their age. Their wisdom could make us all better people and could certainly give you a dose of humility and humanity. Grow some self esteem so you don’t have to try to acquire it by humiliating those who are different from yourself! You’ll be a happier man.

  • Unpopular

    Seems to me that putting these guys on a sex offender list is a bit of a stretch. It dilutes the list, and pretty soon people wont be paying attention to the actual rapists that rightfully occupy it.

    I’ve banged in public before. It has nothing to do with shame or self-loathing, as some have implied. It had to do with the fact that it was hot, and one of the best lays of my life.


  • JohnPoke

    I’m sorry but public cruising is more prominent in the gay community and in my opinion, it’s disgraceful and disgusting. It’s public property you’re fucking on… PUBLIC property. Go to a sex club, hire an escort, just don’t do it where the PUBLIC wants to walk their dogs, have picnics, exercise, etc. etc.

    You deserve to be arrested if you’re cruising in public parks.

    Now, lumping cruisers into the sex offenders list? That’s a bit much. Throw ’em in jail, give ’em a fine, make them take some classes on how to control their urges and act like a decent human being and send them on their way.

  • ewe

    I see straight people physically all over each other much more than i do gay people. This is a no brainer. Double standard. Inequality. Discrimination. Palm Springs police can fuck off.

  • Ron

    A couple of corrections: Warm Sands is a residential neighborhood, not a park. No park was involved in the sting. The newspaper you cite is called The Desert Sun, not Desert News.

  • Jimmi

    Most of the men who cruise these parks are the closet cases who are married and need to get off with another man before they go back to their sham of a marriage. The other people who cruise the parks have obviously got some internal issues that make them act out like that. Come out of the closet and take it indoors.

  • adman

    In my partners’ hometown, there is a Walmart. In the parking lot of this walmart are scattered a few cars every night, with the straight occupants inside fucking. I would like to see some of these breeders made sex offenders, just to see what the consequences were. Call it a social experiment.

  • Rodrigo

    I agree with many of the posts, I am not interested in seeing gay or straight people having sex on public grounds …
    What I find most baffling is that this isn’t 1954 anymore- there are other places besides parks and the designated highway restrooms to have sex. There’s always craigslist where it’s pretty annonimous and can be done in the privacy of your own home. Can’t host ? I’m sure there are people that can . Just don’t subject us to your lack of self control ..

  • TonyD

    “HARSH PENALties.” Hahaha K, I’ll quit- but what’s the case for public sex, hetero or homosexual not being registered as temporary sexual sex offenders? I guess if the police department targets one group and lets the other go, they have no case to imply no new standards on anyone until they get their department’s behavior together.

  • KennC.

    Yes, it is a double standard. Unfortunately I live in Alabama where gay men that are caught having sex in public are put on the sex offenders list and they have to register just like pedophiles. The police are constantly operating stings at nature trails around here.

  • jason

    The problem with men (I say ‘men” because it’s a gender thing) is that they would have sex in the mud if they had to. Therefore, men who want to have sex with men will sometimes go to extremes such as walking around parks, even in broad daylight, looking for someone. They make themselves visible through their brazen behavior.

    Men who want to have sex with women will, on the other hand, pick her up from a club and have sex in a vehicle where a degree of privacy is present. There are exceptions but, generally, this is the case.

    On the moral issue, I think men have nobody to blame but themselves. Public parks aren’t for fucking in. Find a room, for Pete’s sake. Same applies if it’s men with women.

  • Hilarious

    It should be no more than a fine or at the most community service.

    That said public sex is disgusting gay or straight.

    I’ve never seen people having sex in public myself but I’ve heard of a few clubs being shut down over it. It makes us look bad because for the past 10 or so years I’ve only ever heard of public sex being associated with being gay. We don’t need that kind of image following us around, that only holds us back.

    Considering we’re trying to fight for marriage and adoption rights…public sex isn’t really something we should be participating in.

  • August

    Just more millions it will cost taxpayers when these harmless people are locked up in prison because of sex offender’s impossible conditions to follow. PAY UP PEOPLE!


    Totally wrong that there have been “lovers lanes” since the dawn of the automobile, yet no one ever suggested locking up the men and ladies (you would have to charge both)and making them register as sex offenders. Should be a moot point anyway, why bother the possiblity of police, and being bashed in a public place when there are ways like Craigslist where you can hook any day or night at any time. Ya gotta be safe and exchange both photos and phone numbers and its pretty easy, plus ya find a lot of hawt “straight” dudes who would not be so quick to drive to a crusie area……………..

  • Seth

    I lived in Palm Springs from 2000-2007, and worked in Warm Sands at both the Vista Grande and the All Worlds Resort. While I don’t think that these people should be considered the same as rapists or child molesters, I do think that grown men ought to have enough common sense to keep their clothes on in public. I’ve seen people, in the middle of the day, having sex by the dumpsters located next to Warm Sands Drive. To say nothing of how disgusting it is to know that people don’t mind literally wading through garbage to get some, these episodes made me sad to be gay. Grow up people, and if you persist in these activities, stop acting surprised that mainstream society hates us.

    It’s not internal homophobia to expect a little dignity from our community.

  • BitchinaThong

    I love having sex in public, parading around the park with my butt hanging out and my balls reaching my knees. Don’t like it? Don’t look!!!! At the dawn of manking this is how we used to have sex. It’s natural. SO get it over it! I’m 65 and damm proud of my body!

  • Michael vdB

    What is natural is not always decent. Even nudist camps have rules.

Comments are closed.