The officer, who has not been identified, was found to be “hanging around” the Dancing Bare strip club in North Seattle during an undercover operation related to alleged prostitution activities, sources said.
A Seattle police officer has been placed on paid leave amid an investigation into his involvement with a strip club where police were conducting an undercover operation, according to sources familiar with the matter.
The officer was found, in his off-duty time, to be frequenting the Dancing Bare on Aurora Avenue North in North Seattle, which was the target of a vice operation related to alleged prostitution activities, the sources said.
The officer, who has not been identified, was not arrested and has not been accused of a crime.
He is under investigation after he was found to be “hanging around” the club and engaging in questionable conduct, said one source briefed on the investigation.
Police are trying to determine the scope of the officer’s conduct before deciding the next step, the source said.
If no criminal activity is found, the matter could be referred to the department’s internal-investigations unit, the Office of Professional Accountability, to determine if disciplinary action is warranted, according to the source.
The strip club bills itself as an adult entertainment performance venue catering to adults.
Late Monday night, the police department posted a vague statement on its news website, saying it wanted to “address rumors and media inquiries” that had surfaced.
Several months ago, the statement said, police opened a criminal investigation.
“During the course of that investigation, the SPD requested assistance from the FBI,” the statement said. “The two agencies have been partnering on the case since that time.”
Last week, the officer was questioned by investigators and placed on administrative leave, the statement said.
No details were provided on the nature of investigation.