A retired Las Vegas police officer, whose wife is a sergeant in the Metropolitan Police Department’s sex crimes bureau, has been charged with soliciting a child for prostitution.
Kirk Reed Hooten, 51, was booked Thursday into the Clark County Detention Center but was free on $10,000 bond as of Friday morning, according to jail and court records.
His arrest stems from “a recent incident involving a teenage girl in the valley,” according to Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, who released a statement Friday describing Hooten as a longtime friend.
Metro detectives became aware of the alleged crime after a social media post on Nov. 15 about the incident.
Further details surrounding Hooten’s arrest were not released. On Friday, Metro’s public records division declined an open records request from the Las Vegas Review-Journal for a copy of Hooten’s arrest report, citing an open investigation, although the department in the past has released arrest reports for suspects not affiliated with Metro.
In his statement Friday, Lombardo, who was out of the country, said, “I am being asked about my friendship with former LVMPD officer Kirk Hooten. Yes, among the many friends I have on the department, Kirk is one of them. I’ve known him for many years and I find his arrest distressing.”
Metro employment records show that Hooten joined the agency in February 1994 and retired in April. His assignment at the time of his retirement was not available, Metro spokesman Larry Hadfield said.
His wife, Cheryl, is assigned to Metro’s “Internet Crimes Against Children” task force, a subdivision of the department’s sex crimes bureau. The task force investigates the manufacturing, distribution or possession of child pornography; the luring of children with technology; statutory sexual seduction; lewdness with a minor; interstate travel for the purpose of sex with a minor; and other related offenses.
She joined Metro in August 1996, and Review-Journal news clippings quote her as a Metro sex crimes detective as early as 2002.
The two were married in Clark County in November 1993, according to county marriage records. Attempts to reach the couple on Friday were unsuccessful.
Kirk Hooten’s attorney, David Chesnoff, told the Review-Journal: “People should not rush to judgment. We will address the allegations in court, which is the proper place to do it.”
Steve Grammas, president of the Las Vegas Police Protective Association, said Friday that because Kirk Hooten is retired, the police union would not offer any legal support or representation in his case.
As recently as May 2018, Hooten served as health director of the association’s executive board, according to the union’s website.
He is expected in Las Vegas Justice Court on Monday morning for a status hearing, court records show.