Photos: Joshua Harker busted for prostitution with knowledge of HIV/AIDS

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Joshua Harker in a photo from his Facebook page. Additional photos and more below.
Prostitution arrests seldom make headlines -- unless the person busted allegedly was taking part in this activity knowing that he or she has HIV/AIDS.

Joshua Harker is the latest person accused of this crime, and he's hardly the first. In recent years, at least two other people have been charged with the same offense in the metro area, including one cuffed for doing so over and over again.

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A 2012 booking photo of Darren Garcia.
The most notorious local examples of such incidents involve Darren Garcia.

As we reported in January 2012, Garcia was busted for prostitution with the knowledge of AIDS for the first time in Denver in 2007 and received an eighteen-month sentence. Nonetheless, she was arrested on the same charge in November 2009. According to information in this Westword post, she offered to perform sexual acts for $50, and at the time of her arrest, she was found to have crack cocaine in her possession, leading to a second felony charge, possession of a controlled substance. But she served only six months behind bars that time around.

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Darren Garcia's 2009 mug shot.
Why a lesser sentence for a second conviction of a crime listed as a felony because it potentially endangers the lives of others? Denver District Attorney's Office spokeswoman Lynn Kimbrough provided some background in a Westword interview.

"A regular prostitution arrest is usually done as a city ordinance violation," she said. "But prostitution with the knowledge of AIDS is a class-five felony, with a presumptive sentencing range of up to three years in prison."

In both instances, though, Garcia wasn't convicted of this act. Instead, she pleaded guilty to attempted prostitution with the knowledge of AIDS, a class-six felony that can net up to eighteen months in a Department of Corrections facility, or half as much as a class-five felony.

As such, Garcia received the maximum sentence for a class-six felony for the 2007 conviction, but only six months for the same crime two years later. For that reason, she was free in early 2012, when she was among fourteen people arrested in a prostitution sweep on Colfax.

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William Head.
Last August, William Head -- yes, that's his real name -- was cuffed on similar accusations. As we posted at the time, Head's arrest affidavit says Denver police received a complaint that July about a man conducting massages that were thought to have edged into prostitution -- and the investigating officer heard unconfirmed reports that Head "possibly had the HIV virus and had transmitted that virus to another male."

An undercover detective subsequently contacted Head, who identified himself as "Tor," and made an appointment. Upon his arrival, the cop confirmed the price for the massage -- $60 -- and asked about "extras." Head reportedly said he also performed erotic massages, including a prostate massage, plus hand jobs and blow jobs. Moreover, he noted that these services were covered by the $60 fee.

At that point, Head was arrested, and during a subsequent interview, he told officers he'd tested positive for HIV in October 2010 and was told at that time he had AIDS -- a diagnosis confirmed by a second test shortly thereafter. He's been treated for the ailment at a local VA hospital since then but has continued to do massages, as he's done since 2007.

What about the allegations against Harker?

Continue for more about the arrest of Joshua Harker for prostitution with knowledge of AIDS, including additional photos and a police report.



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89 comments
muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

With male prostitutes having AIDS, we'll never get the republican convention.  Jeff Gannon, republican poster boy!

garcia04301970
garcia04301970

Ok I know this kid and no one has the right to judge nd this kid is a good friend nd I would never judge him even if I didnt know him the ppl in the wrong are the ones who after he told them nd They willingly hooked up with him as for you tyler someone should cut your dick off so get off his nuts

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

Just another clueless, "entitled" liberal.  

bjmcinti
bjmcinti

Notice how no one here worries about the above people and how THEY contracted HIV? Why are we not mad that some John or Jane gave it to them? Why do we vilify them so?


Darren Garcia is probably the most tragic case in Colorado. Homeless, it is reported that she repeatedly asked for help. Where were all the do-gooders in Denver who are so hot on sex trafficking and prostitution? Why was no one interested in helping Darren? In fact, I was a witness to her healthcare providers talking about his HIV status on Facebook! Just because someone is HIV+ does not exempt you from HIPPA privacy laws! The law reads that if someone is HIV+ their medical condition can ONLY be released to the coroner upon their death. Law enforcement were the ones who released his status to the news and they are not bound by privacy laws.


No one ever talks about HIV in an informed manner. Did the press EVER release whether or not any of the above were addressing their HIV or using condoms? Do we know or do we just go on a witch hunt? Transmission is not likely if parties are addressing their HIV.


HPV is deadly too but we don't hear the public outcry about this!

Corey Steven Haley
Corey Steven Haley

Jay as I recall Jesus befriended prostitutes not called them subhuman trash. I would rather get HIV than diabetes. It is benign now and not a death sentence. Plus if you are having sex with anyone casually you should use a condom. Problem solved. You don't get std's wearing a condom. I think westward should put on the cover the picture and full name of latest chick a guy took home who gave him herpes. Oh wait there aren't enough pages for that. This hatred towards him is because he is a guy. If you hire a prostitute and don't wear a condom than what do you expect?

Jay Cismaru
Jay Cismaru

Corey its not homophobic at all what it is is criminal he knows he should not be doing this since he is sick subhuman trash

Jesse Yedinak
Jesse Yedinak

The behaviors they listed are not high risk for HIV, that's a fact.

Miranda Huerta
Miranda Huerta

Reason number 1528594836 why you shouldn't have sex with people you dont really know!

Val Justin G
Val Justin G

It's a scary problem, no one likes to talk about it, but the ppl that are infected are so wrong, but that goes to show you, get tested and know who you have sex with, ugh

Chelly Serna
Chelly Serna

I agree that what he did doesn't necessarily lead to catching this disease, but if we inform the public more on dealings like these than maybe people will think twice before getting a prostitute. Or, at least get a more expensive one. You get what you pay for, right?

Jawnjawn Tafoya
Jawnjawn Tafoya

I would say the second count should not even matter you can't catch HIV from getting your dick sucked unless you have herpes in that case the officer should not even be on this squad

Shelby Kenison
Shelby Kenison

I would pimp slap that kid and be his pimp. Then turn around and pimp him out to the crack head hoe he was unleashing on others.

stanley1
stanley1

@muhutdafuga Quite the obsession with gay male prostitutes. Of course, you're a leftist douchebag, so A) you project, and B) you're a fucking tool.

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@fishingblues You mean entitled not to be infected with AIDS by a conservative.  I don't think people should be infecting others with this reagan error disease, fishingrainbow.

rfore78944
rfore78944

@jacksonbillie Thank you for an educated response to this article.  I echo what Jessie has said earlier....the sexual acts listed pose low risk even if someone's HIV isn't controlled by medications.  If they were on medications which I know was the case for at least of of the gentlemen above then there is actually very little risk of transmission.  It's the public ignorance, shaming and stigma that is readily apparent in these comments that often furels peoples aprehension to disclose their HIV status!  And FYI to a previous comment...there cannot be a "new AIDS epidemic"  the first one has never ended and the overwhelming ignorance and hatred in people's comments is a good indication as why it has never ended.  I would have loved to be connected to miss garcia in order to offer support (at the very least).  There is a Colorado HIV De-Criminalization Task Force...might be something you'd like to check out!

stanley1
stanley1

Oh, I bet you're such a follower of Jesus, Corey. 

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@stanley1 @muhutdafuga Republican gay male prostitutes....at least that's better than their preferred Republican Pedophilia:

-- Republican preacher Stephen White, who demanded a return to traditional values, was sentenced to jail after offering $20 to a 14-year-old boy for permission to perform oral sex on him.

-- Republican talk show host Jon Matthews pleaded guilty to exposing his genitals to an 11 year old girl.

-- Republican anti-gay activist Earl "Butch" Kimmerling was sentenced to 40 years in prison for molesting an 8-year old girl after he attempted to stop a gay couple from adopting her.

-- Republican Party leader Paul Ingram pleaded guilty to six counts of raping his daughters and served 14 years in federal prison.

-- Republican election board official Kevin Coan was sentenced to two years probation for soliciting sex over the internet from a 14-year old girl.

-- Republican Tennessee State Representative, Keith Westmoreland was arrested on seven felony counts of lewd and lascivious exhibition to girls under the age of 16 (i.e. exposing himself to children).

-- Republican anti-abortion activist John Allen Burt was found guilty of molesting a 15-year old girl at the home for troubled girls that he ran.

-- Republican County Councilman Keola Childs pleaded guilty to molesting a male child.

-- Republican candidate Richard Gardner,a Nevada State Representative, admitted to molesting his two daughters.

-- Republican Councilman and former Marine Jack W. Gardner had been convicted of molesting a 13-year old girl. when the Republican Party, knowing of these crimes, put him on the ballot.

-- Republican County Commissioner Merrill Robert Barter pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual contact and assault on a teenage boy.

-- Republican City Councilman Fred C. Smeltzer, Jr. pleaded no contest to raping a 15 year-old girl and served 6-months in prison. Republican activist Parker J. Bena pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography on his home computer and was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison and fined $18,000.

-- Republican parole board officer and former Colorado state representative, Larry Jack Schwarz, was fired after child pornography was found in his possession. With his political career over, he went to work in the hard-core pornography industry for Platinum X Pictures, owned by his daughter, porn starlet Jewel De'Nyle (Stephany Schwarz).

-- Republican strategist and Citadel Military College graduate Robin Vanderwall, director of Faith & Family Alliance, (a Christian Coalition spin off), former student of Pat Robertson's Regent University, member of Ralph Reed's inner circle who funneled money to from lobbyist Jack Abramoff to Reed, was convicted in Virginia on five counts of soliciting sex from boys and girls over the internet.

-- Republican city councilman Mark Harris, who is described as a "good military man" and "church goer," was convicted of repeatedly having sex with an 11-year-old girl and sentenced to 12 years in prison.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@muhutdafuga 


How much do you want to wager that the vast majority of people with AIDS are liberal?


I don't know  why I bother, you are seriously too stupid to engage.  

bjmcinti
bjmcinti

@DonkeyHotay @bjmcinti  To the Health Department only...not the news, not Facebook, not your friends. Reporting HIV to the Health Department is totally different than reporting it to the news or on Facebook. And other staff of a facility really have no right to know someone's medical conditions especially if they are admin type people. Only the physician treating can report the status to the Health Department. Talking about someone's medical condition when you work for the facility where they are being treated is a crime and Darren can and should file a civil suit over it.


If people can't understand their obligation to HIPPA they have no place in healthcare. I am not allowed to report anything unless people are homicidal or suicidal. Everything that happens due to the bedroom (unless it is kids or dogs) is not my business. I am not ending up in prison due to my inability to keep people's business private.


Not only did this person talk about his HIV+ status, she also talked about what he said and did in his treatment at her facility. You could look on her Facebook and see where she worked. That is a direct violation of HIPPA. Just because you don't like someone or are outraged because they are prostituting while positive does not give you permission to talk about who they are, what they say, where they are in treatment and their HIV status.


We were all upset that Darren was out prostituting to provide a roof for herself. What we should be more upset about is that Darren was not getting the help she needed! What about Darren?! Am I the only one who worried about her? What will she do now? Where is she? Is she healthy? Are we so outraged that we are forgetting that Darren is a sister, daughter, cousin and friend to people who care for her? Many trans people resort to sex work when they can't find any other work and may be outcasted by family. In fact now, with a lengthy criminal history for prostituting while positive and corporate America doing background checks to hire people Darren won't even be able to get a job at McDonalds!


We have work to do in Colorado surrounding sex work. I like a model program in Ohio called CATCH where after lengthy treatment and court requirements, sex workers can get their whole record expunged. We need it in Colorado and only the Governor can order it. So if you like what I am saying and would like to support laws that help people to move on with their lives so we don't hear these types of stories please contact your local representative or the Governors' office and start talking about it! Prostitution is only a municipal violation but a prostitution charge can cause homeless, jobless people.



bjmcinti
bjmcinti

@rfore78944 @jacksonbillie  Thanks! I would love to check out the task force...HIV is only criminalized in relation to sex work and it gets even more offensive that the sex worker is charged with a more serious felony than the john/jane. I guess they are more criminal if selling then purchasing. This law has NEVER been challenged.


Anyone arrested in Colorado for soliciting or prostituting has to consent to HIV testing at their own cost. The results of these tests go to the City Attorney. If positive and arrested again, person is charged and the City Attorney can release this information to the public. The legal testing of body fluids really bothers me!

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@fishingblues @muhutdafuga The worst president in modern history ignored the threat and the conservative carriers and the reagan era illness got out of hand.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@bjmcinti ... HIPPA provides severe Civil Fines -- up to  $100,000 -- and in some cases Criminal Penalties. 


You are correct, they health care provider is obligated to inform the CDPHE, but public disclosures outside covered entities providing necessary health care would be a violation.


You obviously feel strongly about it -- as you should -- and YOU PERSONALLY can initiate the HIPPA violation complaint, it does not have to be filed by the patient.


Start here -- http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/complaints/



If more concerned citizens reported the numerous Privacy Violations that take place every day in the media, perhaps after a few million $$ in fines some of these providers would take notice.



DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@bjmcinti "HIV is only criminalized in relation to sex work"


In many States -- haven't checked Colorado -- it isn't limited to sex work, anyone who aware of their HIV+ and does not inform their partner(s) prior to engaging in sex can be charged, some ass-backwards States still charge "attempted murder" and other extreme felony levels.


In Colorado -- iirc --  it is Felony Assault on a Police Officer for someone who is HIV+, Hep+ to spit on a cop or prison guard.






rfore78944
rfore78944

@bjmcinti you can search the group on facebook for details for the Tuesday meeting.  Kari

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@muhutdafuga 


"... you are seriously too stupid to engage."


... and once again you prove it.

bjmcinti
bjmcinti

@DonkeyHotay @bjmcinti  You know DonkeyHotay...She took down her posts before I could print them but I know who she is and possibly her FB page could be subpoenaed. Darren's public defender was aware of this...I hope she is ok...

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@bjmcinti ... another legal basis that those Publicly Outed and experiencing Job, Housing or other discrimination due to their + status would be to bring an ADA claim -- since it may be unlawful to not reasonably accommodate those suffering from medical disabilities.



rfore78944
rfore78944

@bjmcinti Search Colorado HIV De-Criminalization Task Force or shoot me your email at aol.com

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