Adult film actress Stormy Daniels will receive a $450,000 settlement from the City of Columbus, Ohio, in exchange for dropping her lawsuit against the city over her arrest last year at a strip club, NBC News reports.
Back in July 2018, Daniels (real name: Stephanie Clifford) was performing at Sirens, a strip club in Columbus, at the height of her fame while the headlines were dominated by the so-called “hush money” payout that had been given to her by a Donald Trump associate.
Unbeknownst to Daniels, officers from the Columbus Police Department’s vice unit were there, and following one of her performances, arrested her for violating an Ohio law that prohibits performers at adult-oriented businesses from touching anyone who is not a close relative. Two other performers, performing under the names Miranda Panda and Brittany Walters, were also arrested.
Within hours, the criminal charges against all three women were dropped on a technicality — the way the law is written, it only applies to “regular performers” at adult establishments. Since Stormy was a guest performer at Sirens and not a regular performer, she was able to avoid criminal charges.
That was not the end of it, however. Daniels’ attorney at the time, Michael Avenatti, claimed that the arrest was politically motivated, a claim she made in her lawsuit against the city while represented by Chase Mallory.
Rather than take the case to court, officials from Columbus decided to settle, giving the adult performer nearly $500,000 in exchange for dropping her lawsuit.
Her attorney said she could have gotten more, but that it wasn’t about the money — it was about holding the officers who arrested her accountable and protecting other adult performers in the future.
“That’s the only reason she agreed to settle the case for what she did. Her main goal was to make sure people weren’t going to be treated like she was going forward.”
Daniels, for her part, says that the city has done right by her, not only in paying the settlement but in making changes within its police department following her arrest.
“They have really done a great job of addressing the problems here,” she said.
In addition to the city giving Daniels a hefty payout, the officers involved in her arrest have all been sanctioned as well. As reported at the time by The Inquisitr, back in early August, the five Columbus officers involved in the incident were notified that they would be disciplined in various ways. However, because the officers were, at the time, involved in a lawsuit, and because the department’s vice unit had been disbanded, the nature of the disciplinary actions was not made known to the public.