Crime

Sex, parks and videotape in Bellingham

Here’s what the Bellingham Police Department does

The Bellingham Police Department enforces the law within Bellingham city limits.
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The Bellingham Police Department enforces the law within Bellingham city limits.

Whatcom County’s late summer sun is out. The birds are singing. The bees are busy buzzing. But those three shouldn’t necessarily be combined, and most certainly not in a public city park.

Twice this week, Bellingham police have responded to city parks for reports of couples involved in public displays of affection that were ... well, we’ll say a little too intimate for young eyes or anyone else’s, for that matter.

Officers responded at 4:23 p.m. Monday, Sept. 2, to Cornwall Park, according to information provided to The Bellingham Herald by Lt. Claudia Murphy, after witnesses entered the restroom and saw a 61-year-old man and a 34-year-old woman with most of their clothes off engaged in sexual activity on the floor.

The witness reportedly left the restroom immediately and phoned police, who arrived to find the couple still partially naked and engaged in sexual activity. Murphy said the pair was cited for indecent exposure and trespassed from all city parks.

Approximately 24 hours later at 4:27 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 3, officers were called to the 100 block of Northshore Drive for another report of lewd conduct.

Emergency radio traffic at the time of the incident said two topless women were seen near the beach at Bloedel Donovan Park using a camera on a tripod to film themselves engaging in sexual activity.

Officers spoke to the two women, Murphy said, and informed them they were in a public place and their activities could be seen by others who were offended.

No charges were filed, though, Murphy said, as the reporting parties only wanted to have the couple stopped and didn’t want to be a witnesses.

David Rasbach joined The Bellingham Herald in 2005 and now covers breaking news. He has been an editor and writer in several western states since 1994.
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