A man was sentenced Wednesday to six months in jail for impersonating a police officer and demanding a massage and $200 while pretending to perform a business inspection of a Lake Forest massage parlor, authorities said.
Edward Justin LaPorte, 48, Mission Viejo, took an offer from the court, pleading guilty to pretending to be a cop, commercial burglary, and carrying a loaded, concealed gun in public.
According to the Orange County district attorney, prosecutors pushed for one year in jail, but LaPorte was sentenced to half that, plus three years formal probation.
However, time served in jail and time accrued for good behavior mean LaPorte will go free in about two weeks, according to Deputy District Attorney Andrew Katz.
From 1997 to 2001, LaPorte was a police officer with the Arlington Heights Police Department in Illinois. For several years prior to that, he was an officer with the North Chicago Police Department. After leaving the police force, LaPorte moved to California.
At about noon Jan. 31, 2011, LaPorte entered Lake Forest's Golden Spa massage parlor wearing a silver police badge on his belt and carrying a gun in a shoulder holster. He told the manager that he was investigating the parlor due to a recent complaint, and wandered around the massage parlor writing notes on a clipboard.
Then, he demanded a massage, telling the manager his gun holster hurt his back. While the manager was sending a masseuse into a room to give LaPorte a massage, he undressed and laid naked on the massage table. LaPorte received a 30-minute back massage.
After the back massage, the masseuse left the room and LaPorte asked the manager to send her back in to massage his front, but the manager refused.
LaPorte got dressed, failed to pay for his massage, and demanded that the manager pay him $200 for the inspection. The manager again refused.
During the massage, the Golden Spa manager had called Lake Forest's business licensing department to describe the situation and a Lake Forest business licensing inspector responded to the business.
He caught LaPorte as he was leaving the establishment, but the pretender became belligerent and yelled that he didn't have to answer to the city representative when asked about his "inspection." The licensing inspector and manager wrote down LaPorte's license plate number and contacted police.
the following day and jailed.