Stormy Daniels Settles Lawsuit Over 2018 Arrest in Ohio

AVN Hall of Famer Stormy Daniels, who last year filed a high-profile lawsuit against Donald Trump, was arrested in July 2018 during a live performance at a strip club in Columbus, Ohio. The charges of illegally touching a customer—who was an undercover vice officer—were thrown out within less than 24 hours, and Daniels with her then-attorney Michael Avenatti quickly charged that the arrest was politically motivated due to her lawsuit against Trump, as reported.

Daniels then sued the Columbus police, claiming that she was wrongfully arrested due to the political, pro-Trump biases of the arresting officers.

On Friday morning, Daniels returned to Columbus to negotiate a settlement to the $2 million lawsuit. The negotiations did not last long. According to a report by WSYX/WTTE TV News, shortly before noon local time, Daniels announced that she had settled the lawsuit for $450,000—less than 25 percent of the sum she originally demanded.

“To do any of this you have to have a good sense of humor," Daniels said as she spoke to reporters following the announcement that the lawsuit had been settled.

Daniels was performing at the Sirens Gentlemen’s Club in Columbus when undercover vice cops arrested her, after she allegedly “motorboated” a female officer posing as customer of the club. Officers charged her with violating a rarely invoked state law that prohibits strip club performers from physical contact with customers. 

But prosecutors quickly realized that the law applied only to dancers who perform regularly at a specific establishment, not to “guest” performers. As a result, Daniels was released with no charges within 24 hours of her arrest.

The botched sting operation against Daniels led the Columbus police to shut down the department’s vice unit, and discipline five of the officers involved in targeting Daniels. Just last week, the city’s new, interim police chief recommended that two of those officers be fired from the department, as reported.

The Columbus police after an internal investigation ruled that the arrest was “improper,” but continue to deny that Daniels' arrest was politically motivated.

Photo By WSYX/WTTE Screen Capture