We have all been on both sides of this age old booking question: Are you associated with law enforcement in any way? And of course we all quickly respond with something along the lines of, “No, I’m not. Are you?”
See, this bothers me because it is a needless question; totally ineffective, a toothless attempt to protect oneself from arrest in the event of a sting operation. I have bad news: COPS ARE ALLOWED TO LIE.
An undercover police officer will answer that question in the exact same manner a legitimate sex worker or client. The question is not some magic pass code phrase that, like a sorcerer’s spell, forces their lungs and vocal cords to involuntarily admit their true identity.
Asking this question during introductions or scheduling does nothing to protect either party from arrest. I used to point this out to men that contacted me, but I stopped when I realized it was this helpful tip I gave that made them even more anxious and paranoid about my legitimacy. Pointing out that a cop’s answer would almost certainly be the same as my own seems to make me look suspicious instead of helpful and informed, which is what my intention was.
At best, this question is a formality with no essential value within the exchange as a whole. At worst, it gives false comfort to those that ask it. Satisfied with the answer, they may believe the negative response to their question leaves no doubt as to whether the person on the other end is law enforcement. With their paranoia quelled, they may actually ignore other warning signs of trouble and walk straight into the very situation they fear.
I have only been tricked into a law enforcement sting once. The guy pretending to be the client did not give off some of the blatant red flags I look for based on my limited knowledge and some assumptions about how sting operations work.
The man did not try to rush me over, patiently waiting all afternoon and evening for his appointment time to arrive. He did not offer me a higher amount than my asking rate, his language wasn’t stiff and clinical, nor was it explicit and crude. When I asked for a selfie from him he told me he would worry about it floating around, but would FaceTime with me. And we did. He was a reasonably attractive man in his early 30s with his hair cut short. He did not look any more or less “like a cop” than any other man in his demographic. He asked me if I was associated with police. I said no and asked, “Are you?” He gave a little chuckle and denied it.
Police are legally allowed to lie. Whether it is telling an escort they are not an officer or telling a murder suspect they have DNA evidence against them which does not actually exsist, their given the freedom to manipulate and deceive the subjects of their work. They routinely decieve suspects with outlandish lies declaring forensic evidence or accomplice cooperation, manipulating them into a confession. By (nearly) any means necessary, they are given an extensive toolbox to complete the task. Whether deep undercover for long term DEA missions or undercover for the evening to conduct a local prostitution sting, police are given liberty with their words and actions to ensure the mission is not compromised and they remain undetected.
So, go ahead and ask the person on the phone if they have any association with law enforcement. If it comforts you and eases your anxiety, that is all well and it...but ONLY if you realize that comfort is false and there is no way to seperate the honest answers from the lies.
A legitamate provider and an undercover cop will always answer your question the same exact way.
“No, I’m not. Are you?”