November 1st, 2007
01:22 PM ET
8 months ago

State GOP lawmaker in gay sex scandal

Watch CNN's Carol Costello report on the latest scandal.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – It has been a truly scandalous few months for the GOP - for the third time in three months a Republican lawmaker is accused of soliciting sex with another man.

This time it's Washington State Rep. Richard Curtis - whose “I’m not gay” defense sounds a lot like Florida State Rep. Bob Allen's and Idaho Senator Larry Craig's.

Curtis told the Columbian newspaper in Spokane that he did not have sex with the man.

But the Spokane police department tell CNN a different story.

They say that on October 26, Curtis, dressed in women's lingerie, is alleged to have approached a young man in the "Hollywood Erotic Boutique."

The rest of the story is contained in a graphic 50 page police document. The young man alleges Curtis offered him $1,000 for unprotected sex at a nearby hotel.

And he says, "At the conclusion of the sexual activities, Curtis fell asleep."

The police report says the man, Cody Castagna, then took Curtis’ wallet - in order to extort money from the representative - and "threatened to publicly expose Richard Curtis' gay lifestyle to his wife."

At that point, police say Curtis called on an officer to investigate, hoping the incident would go away once police nabbed a suspect for taking his wallet.

Instead the media got wind of the case and found Curtis' alleged sex partner-who went public with his attorney.

"He gave me his wallet…as collateral for what he promised me" said Castagna.

It's a particularly ugly drama unfolding around another conservative Republican lawmaker. Like Florida State Rep. Bob Allen, who has pled not guilty to a charge of soliciting gay sex in July and Sen. Larry Craig, who is trying to withdraw his guilty plea on a charge of disorderly conduct in a restroom at Minneapolis Airport.

Curtis is married with children - and votes conservatively. He has voted against a domestic partnership bill, and a bill that would have outlawed discrimination based on sexual orientation.

On Wednesday he announced he was resigning his seat and said in a statement: “Events that have recently come to light have hurt a lot of people. I sincerely apologize for any pain my actions may have caused.

“This has been damaging to my family, and I don't want to subject them to any additional pain that might result from carrying out this matter under the scrutiny that comes with holding public office.”

The Spokane County prosecutor is considering whether to bring a charge of extortion against Castagna.

– CNN's Carol Costello


Filed under: GOP
soundoff (234 Responses)
  1. Dick Melville, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

    Until reading recent stories, including the latest on Republican Curtis in Spokane, I was not sure what GOP stood for. I now know it is "Gay Old Party"

    November 1, 2007 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  2. jw, canadian,ok

    Neal C. – Liberal media, how 2000 is that? Fox news has twice the viewers of CNN and MSNBC combined, 60% of print media is owned by a conservative. As far as your Hillary affair, call Bill O'really.

    November 1, 2007 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  3. The Condor

    The Liberal/homosexual/socialist/CNN conspiracy has been hard at work! While poor Republicans try desperately to raise important issues, the demo/libo/commy/homo/socialists have bribed CNN to once again distract attention from the real issues. O wake up, America! Why oh why can't you fall for the same old load of Conservative crap just one more time!

    November 1, 2007 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  4. Matt, Houston, TX

    Interesting. The people attacking the democrats posting here have not only strayed from the fact that the man BROKE THE LAW, is in denial about being gay, consistanly votes to restrict the rights of gays and endangered his own family by having unprotected sex of the most dangerous kind for spreading disease but are also somehow twisting this into democrats slamming gays. Where's the logic? How the heck did they come up with that? Weird.

    And don't get me started on the christians saying that being gay is a choice and we are doomed to playing in satan's playground. They just have a fundamental lack of knowledge about when, how and why the bible was written. (Here's a hint, study history in something other than the bible).

    You are either born gay or not, it ain't a matter of choice, people. Every year, more SCIENTIFIC studies are showing a physiological link to sexual orientation, NOT a psychological link. So, just like laws are not to be made that discriminate against people based on the color they were born, they should not be made to discriminate against your sexual orientation since you have as much control over that as you have over being white, Afro-American, Chinese, etc.

    Hmm, I seem to have stryed from the point . . . oh yeah, the idiot proved that he was a lier (I'm not gay), a hypocrite (self-explanatory), a criminal (broke the law despite being from the 'law and order' party . . . yeah, what a joke that's proving to be) and was a scumbag to his family.

    I'm not a republican, I'm not a democrat but on this one, I have to go with the democrats.

    BTW, the non-capitalizations were done on purpose. Have a nice day, :-)

    November 1, 2007 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  5. David, Albany, NY

    Personally, I don't care if a son marries his mother or sister. It's against my personal taste, but it they're two consenting adults, who I am I to say what people can and can't do if they're not hurting anyone else.

    No one seems to get this simple point – stop trying to control people's lives because of you're own personal opinions. Why shouldn't a fellow human being have the same rights as you if they're not hurting anyone else? Give me one good reason other than your own personal opinion or some lame bible quote that certain actions are "wrong." I say live and let live people. Poeple should be able to do what they want as long as they aren't hurting anyone else. Period.

    The reason that people flip out when they see Republicans doing these things isn't because of their conduct per se, but because they make a living denying people's rights and pandering to ignorance in order to get votes.

    November 1, 2007 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  6. Mark, Sacramento, CA

    To Chris, cbus:

    You forgot/left out 1 more "na", just fyi. :-)

    November 1, 2007 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  7. Andrew Moyell

    Responding to this post "If I want to marry my sister or mother or dog, can I then say I don't have equal rights too? Isn't that a civil rights issue??

    Posted By Ga Voter : November 1, 2007 10:48 am
    Is comparing homosexuality to incest and beastiality really the best argument you can come up with? It's a shocker you didn't post under your real name. I'd be embarrased by my lazy logic too!

    November 1, 2007 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  8. Tomy, soo, Michigan

    Hmmm... Republican = closeted homosexual?

    November 1, 2007 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  9. Shannon, Minnesota

    hahahaha, the party of family values!

    November 1, 2007 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  10. Marie, minnesota

    James
    You might want to do some research, CNN did stories on the Medal of Honor winner, I watched them. You keep watching Fox and believing the crap they feed you, it must be nice to live in lala land. Fox reported the other day, that there were no casualties in Iraq for the previous week, when if fact there were six dead Americans and dozens of dead Iraqis. Delusional is what you are, and the only bias is on your side, I bet you believe Saddam attacked us on 9/11

    When CNN decides to run almost 50 (no exaggeration) articles on Larry Craig – but not ONE article about the Navy Seal that was awarded the Medal of Honor (a very rare and honorable event)… YOU call that objective reporting??

    This guy (Richard Curtis) is a political pimple – a Washington State Representative, WOW. But CNN feels it deserves the #1 spot on the Blog and front page of their Headline News *BECAUSE* it's a republican – involving sex.

    If you can't see the agenda – critical thinking has escaped you.

    Posted By James, Phoenix AZ : November 1, 2007 12:44 pm

    November 1, 2007 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  11. Tom Dedham, Mass

    Tom Dedham, Mass: Come out of the closet.

    Posted By Anonymous : November 1, 2007 1:31 pm

    I see you are as gutless by posting anonymously as you are stupid for making the remark itself.

    Not only are you anonymous, you are insignificant.

    Now to the people that are missing my points:

    Point #1 – The stories in New Jersey got scant coverage at best and NEVER made it to the ticker for all of us to discuss and blog on. That was my factual statement, remember, reading is fundamental.

    Point #2 – Using all of your flawed logic that states that ALL Republicans are hypocrites because a select FEW preach family but don't live it, and that is why this is a BIG story, I could easily say that the New Jersey dozen should have been an EVEN BIGGER story as your WHOLE PARTY ran with one slogan, to clean up poiltics.

    How did that work out?

    Wouldn't that make you ALL hypocrites as well?????

    The difference is and many of my like minded posters have said this as well, both sides have jerks that make each party look bad, the difference is that only one party admits it.

    Look up Barney Frank and Gerry Studds and that Bill Clinton guy to name a few, nah, all just good guys.

    November 1, 2007 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  12. Tired, Chicago, IL

    Phil in Chicago,

    I can't speak for Rob, but the Republican lawmakers sure are telling me how to live my life. They start by telling me I can't marry my partner. They continue by keeping me out of her hospital room when she was in a head-on collision with a drunk driver going the wrong way down a one-way. And I'm sure it will only continue when our child is born and we have to jump through every legal loophole imaginable just so either of us can pick her up from the nurse's office when she has a fever at school.

    CNN and other news sources are doing their job by exposing people like Curtis for their hypocrisy. Maybe once America realizes that these people are not making laws based on a sense of moral rightness, but rather because they are too afraid to be true to themselves and live an honest, but, at times, trying life...maybe then...and only then...can people like me and my family take a deep breath and enjoy the freedoms our taxes pay for. If CNN doesn't do this...if the media doesn't do this...nobody will ever do it. Certainly not lawmakers like Rep. Curtis.

    November 1, 2007 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  13. Shari Winston-Salem NC

    Why, out of 139 comments, is there only ONE person concerned that this is adultery and puts his family at great risk by doing this? How about heterosexual adulterous acts? How about the millions of people who do that? Forget the gay part, where is your outrage about the adultery? Are we so accustomed to it that we don't see it as a sin and a cancer? SAD SAD SAD!!

    November 1, 2007 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  14. gawd

    Republican again..is there a end to this crap,end of gops to be elected,going on for years.

    November 1, 2007 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  15. Greg, Barrington, Il

    Dear CNN: You could almost feel sorry for conservative law-makers, as some of them are so obviously between a rock and a hard place. They must be torn between their party's barbaric stance against homosexuality and their own (perfectly natural, I guess) urges to express their sexuality in non-sanctioned ways, at least according to the platform of the 5th century thought process of the Republican party. I have more sympathy for him by far than the hate-filled bigots that set the rules for his own party..

    November 1, 2007 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  16. Mitch McFruits, Louisville, Kentucky

    " . . . dressed in women's lingerie . . . approached a young man in the "Hollywood Erotic Boutique: . . . offered him $1,000 for unprotected sex at a nearby hotel . . . At the conclusion of the sexual activities, Curtis fell asleep."

    Those are Republican family values for you! Just ask Mark Foley or Larry Craig, among many others who have not (yet) hit the front page with their antics.

    November 1, 2007 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  17. Greg, Barrington, IL

    It was only after posting my comment on this story that I took the time to read some of the other comments on it. The virulent notes from the right are significant. Reacting to their obvious embarrassment suffered from the series of recent stories about gay Republican scandals, they respond in a predictable manner: attack the Democrats! "Sex sells, this proves it!", "Well, this should assure him of another 6 terms in office", blah, blah, blah. I for one dont think of this as a perfect chance to attack Republicans or conservatives. That is the mentality of those people themselves. What I see is a disturbing situation created by conservatives, no matter who suffers from their attacks, Democrat or Republican. The bible says "We shall suffer not a witch to live", and etc. and etc. Also similar caveats concerning homosexuals. Is it too much to ask rational thinking people to consider that the Christian Bible is not right in every single case? Let's rise to the level that we were made to rise to folks!

    November 1, 2007 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  18. Terry, El Paso, TX

    "I wonder when Hillary's affair with her staffer Huma Abedin will be picked up by any of the liberal media. I won't be holding my breath." – Neill C., Montgomery, Al

    A very cheap shot, Neill. I should bill you for the electricity that it took to download your comment.

    November 1, 2007 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  19. Greg, Barrington, IL

    One more thought: After reading some of the profound bits of wisdom from such bastions of conservative thought as Ann Coulter and others, I am wondering why most conservatives dont seem to have the concept of the word "democratic". Always they refer to people from that party as the "democrat" candidate, or the "democrat" president... Imagine the word spoken in a Brooklyn accent. "Da democrat party". You can always spot a conservative "thinker" by thier seeming inability to use proper word forms. Another example: George Bush's speech about Iraq, "This issue has been drug out over and over". I know about their contempt for anything intellectual or intelligent, but are they really that uneducated?

    November 1, 2007 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  20. Patrick, St. Simons Island, Georgia

    The "contract" that the pervert broke was that of his marriage vows. It appeasrs that the two perverts stiffed each other in more ways than one. The John deserves to be thrown out of office and home and the Johnette should rot in jail with the rest of the deviants. This isn't politics, its pure values.

    November 1, 2007 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  21. Wanda Hartley Mt Vernon, Georgia

    I am not shocked at the gops sex with males. Look at the evalist that was talking with Bush every day about gays, bashing them, and then he hired out for sex.

    November 2, 2007 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  22. Joe S

    Gay as a four dollar bill.

    November 2, 2007 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  23. Mrs. America

    For everyone wondering why CNN puts this stuff on the Ticker, just look at the number of replies it generates. Obviously, we're reading it, so maybe we are closet Political Ticker lovers.

    November 2, 2007 12:57 am at 12:57 am |
  24. Douglas Babb_Princeton_KY

    In 2006 we had "The Da Vinci Code"_ Now 2007 we have the Republican Party Code "GOP" = GAY OLD PARTY_In

    2008 the best motion picture award goes to "THE GOP DRAGS ON"_

    November 2, 2007 07:57 am at 7:57 am |
  25. Denise R. Boston, MA

    First Karl Rove and his buddy for hire Jeff Gannon, now this guy. Is every Republican secretly gay?

    November 2, 2007 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
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