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State v. Romano

Supreme Court of Hawai’i
155 P.3d 1102 (2007)


While working on a prostitution investigation, undercover police officer Jeffrey Tallion obtained a hotel room and dressed in civilian clothes. Tallion browsed through a local newspaper and called the phone number on a massage advertisement. When Pame Romano (defendant) answered the phone call, Tallion asked if she did “out calls.” Romano responded in the affirmative and met with Tallion in the hotel room. Tallion confirmed the price as $100 and asked whether Romano did anything else. After some negotiation, Romano agreed to perform assisted masturbation in exchange for an additional $20. Romano was arrested and charged with prostitution. Romano filed a pretrial motion to dismiss the charge pursuant to Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U.S. 558 (2003). The trial court denied Romano’s motion, concluding that Lawrence was not applicable to the facts of the case. After a trial, Romano was convicted and sentenced to six months’ probation and a fine. Romano appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Acoba, J.)

Dissent (Levinson, J.)

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