Cleveland police officer pleads no contest in prostitution case

September 12, 2018

Cleveland police officer pleads no contest in prostitution case

CLEVELAND, Ohio — A Cleveland police officer pleaded no contest Wednesday to reduced charges that accused him of soliciting a prostitute.

Sgt. Robert Strollo, 47, pleaded no contest to persistent disorderly conduct, a fourth-degree misdemeanor. Cleveland Municipal Judge Suzan Sweeney found him guilty of that charge and scheduled him to appear at an Oct. 30 sentencing hearing.

Strollo was initially charged with first-degree misdemeanor soliciting stemming from a Cleveland police internal affairs investigation. Stroll’s attorney, Henry Hilow, declined to comment.

Strollo was accused of trying to hire a prostitute March 5 in the city’s Slavic Village neighborhood, according to court records.

He began his work with the department in 1998. He currently serves as a supervisor in the First District and has been on medical leave awaiting surgery for an injury, officials previously said.

Strollo was reinstated as a sergeant in August 2017 after a demotion that stemmed from an incident that happened in August 2013 while he worked off-duty security job at a downtown Cleveland strip club. Strollo allowed a bouncer at the Crazy Horse strip club in Cleveland to attack an unruly customer, according to court records.

The department suspended him for 15 days without pay and demoted him to patrol officer.

The department also disciplined Strollo in 2014 after he and two other supervisors failed to oversee six police officers who accepted free goods at a gas station and lied on their duty reports.

The officers under his command got free lottery tickets and cigarettes from the Marathon Gas station on East 40th Street and St. Clair Avenue, gambled on duty at the gas station and tested Tasers inside the building.

Strollo was suspended five days without pay.

The FBI’s Northern Ohio Law Enforcement Task Force investigated Strollo in 2013 as part of a drug investigation into a downtown night club, according to a Cleveland police internal affairs report finalized in 2016.

The task force investigated Strollo and other police officers as part of a probe into the owner of the former Sin Nightclub on West 6th Street who sold cocaine at the club, according to court records and an internal affairs report.

No criminal charges were filed against Strollo.

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