2006-06-08 21:34:21 UTC
When he was 16, high school student Andrew G. Klepper pleaded guilty to
three felonies for sodomizing a female escort with a baseball bat and
an ink marker at his Bethesda home.
Last month, Klepper, now 19, was charged in a case involving another
female escort. This time, police say he set up an advertisement for the
woman's services on a popular Web site and then drove her to a
Rockville hotel to meet a "john" who was really a Montgomery County
Klepper's attorney, Paul Kemp, said the new charge is a minor,
nonviolent offense that is seldom prosecuted.
"The defendant is charged with essentially providing transportation,"
Kemp said during a recent court hearing. "He didn't convince someone to
become a prostitute."
Prosecutors say the new charge -- pandering, a misdemeanor punishable
by up to 10 years in prison -- is a serious offense considering
Klepper's background. Klepper also has been charged with violating the
terms of his probation. He is in jail.
Two of Klepper's classmates at Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda
were also charged in the November 2002 case, which drew widespread
attention because of the age of the defendants and the brutality of the
In the new case, Assistant State's Attorney Jeffrey T. Wennar said in
court that police last month found several photographs taken in
Klepper's Bethesda house that show women "in various states of dress
and undress." Police also found women's undergarments packaged in small
bags, Wennar said.
"There may not have been a victim per se, your honor," Wennar said in
court. "But this fetish complex that he has and this entrepreneurial
desire to sell these sexual items -- for a lack of a better term --
there's something going on here."
Klepper's latest brush with the law came on May 15, after Montgomery
vice detective Thomas Stack logged on to Craigslist -- a free and
popular Web site that allows people to advertise a wide range of items
such as housing and furniture -- and clicked on an ad posted by a
person identified as "Lisa" who was offering "Full Service" for $200
per hour. The ad included two cellphone numbers: Lisa's and one
identified as belonging to a friend who could book appointments if she
According to a police charging document, at 6:15 p.m. the vice officer
called one of the numbers and spoke with the woman. After determining
the price and type of sex acts to be performed, the document said, the
officer and the woman agreed to meet at the Sleep Inn at 3 Research Ct.
-- a block from police headquarters in Rockville.
Once at the hotel, Stack called the woman, who police said told him to
go to Room 222. Inside, Stack identified himself as a police officer,
and he and other officers searched the room, where condoms, the woman's
cellphone and $241 were found, the charging document said.
The woman, Melissa Brewer, told Stack that "her assistant Andrew was
downstairs in the lobby," the document said. Brewer has been charged
with prostitution. Her attorney did not return a phone call yesterday,
and her cellphone appears to no longer be in service.
Officers said they found Klepper downstairs with a laptop computer
connected to the Internet. Brewer and Klepper agreed to make written
statements. They wrote that Klepper was responsible for placing the ad
on Craigslist and that Brewer paid him $30 to drive her from Reston to
the Rockville hotel, police said.
Wennar said in court that Klepper told detectives he had a videotape he
had made at his home of "the prostitute having sex with one of the
three johns'' whom he had taken to the house that day.
Klepper promised police that he would turn over the video, but days
later produced a videotape that "had obviously been erased," Wennar
said. The photos and women's underwear were found in a search of
Klepper's home, police said.
Klepper was released on his own recognizance on the pandering charge
but turned himself in later after his probation officer charged him
with violating the terms of his probation. In the 2002 case, he was
sentenced to a 15-year suspended sentence and five years of probation
after pleading guilty to robbery, first-degree assault and
fourth-degree sexual offense.
Klepper spent several months at a facility for troubled youths in
Tennessee. Kemp and Klepper's father said in court last month that the
teenager has been working and taking classes at Montgomery Community
"He has worked, and shown initiative and desire to do so," Martin
Klepper, a lawyer at a Washington law firm who teaches at Georgetown
Law School, told the judge at the May 23 hearing. "While the charges
against Andrew represent a reprehensible mistake by him, I respectfully
ask that you not let this misstep undermine the good that has resulted
from the past three and a half years of his rehabilitation."
At the time of the latest arrest, Klepper was carrying a law
enforcement badge that Wennar said appeared to have been ordered from a
catalogue. Kemp said that the badge was legitimately obtained and that
his client was not trying to impersonate an officer.
In his profile on the social networking Web site My Space, Klepper says
he is interested in law enforcement.
"i am going to be a cop!" it says under "Andrew's general interests."