Woman charged with prostitution; customers won’t be

The Omaha city prosecutor has decided to charge a 26-year-old southwest Omaha woman with soliciting prostitution and operating an illegal massage parlor, but he won’t be pursuing charges against her customers.

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Makayla Peters

On Jan. 30, undercover police arrested Makayla Peters at her house near 151st and Z Streets on suspicion of three misdemeanor crimes. Police had received complaints that she advertised prostitution activity on Craigslist, an Internet classified ad Web site. Customers were instructed to call her phone number.

Police said an undercover officer arrested Peters inside her home after she supplied him with a condom during an intimate encounter. The officer had agreed to pay her $300 in advance for an all-inclusive date involving sex, according to a police report.

One of the three allegations against Peters was that she ran a house of prostitution. City Prosecutor Marty Conboy said today that he did not have sufficient evidence to charge her with that.

The prostitution charge carries up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. The massage parlor charge carries up to 90 days in jail and a $500 maximum fine.

During an interview last week, Peters said she was repulsed by the allegation that was a prostitute. She denied that she exchanged sex for money, saying that her customers paid for the length of time she would spend with them. She said she often performed body lotion rubs; other times, she said, she disrobed from costumes to fulfill customers’ fantasies.

Conboy said that without Peters’ cooperation, it’s unlikely that he could pursue criminal charges against any of her customers who may have paid for sex.

During questioning after her arrest, Peters told detectives that she “knew officials and several important people,” but she refused to divulge the identities of her customers, Conboy said.

“Right now, we don’t have any information on who those people are,” Conboy said. “Plus, it might have been just a trick on her part to get herself out of trouble at the time. We hear that non-name-dropping talk all the time.”

Peters’ attorney, James Schaefer, said that his client has no interest in cooperating with police to prosecute any customers.

“Because they did not get any information from Makayla during the initial interview, I don’t think they would have any probable cause for a search warrant on her home,” Schaefer said.

During her arrest, Peters also refused to give police consent to remove any contents from her home, Conboy said. That means police don’t have access to her bank statements, telephone records or computer, he said.

No search warrant has been served on Peters’ residence. Police don’t have any supporting evidence to suspect that Peters possessed any extensive bookkeeping records about her clients, Conboy said today.

“We are not aware of any sort of (Hollywood madam) Heidi Fleiss list,” Conboy said. “Logically speaking, if some sort of list existed back at the time of her arrest in January, I am sure that it would be gone now anyway.”

In the meantime, Conboy said, other agencies, including the Nebraska State Patrol and the Internal Revenue Service, may pursue their own criminal investigations of Peters on conspiracy, tax fraud or racketeering charges.

Related Story:

Prostitution suspect says she’d never sell herself for sex

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