No charge for inn owner in sex crime case - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

No charge for inn owner in sex crime case

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Posted: Thursday, May 15, 2003 9:55 am | Updated: 1:50 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

A Mesa hotel owner will not be charged with a crime for tipping off a suspected sexual predator that the police were looking for him, officials said Wednesday.

According to Mesa Police Department reports, officers were investigating Robin Sprigg, 52, when on April 13 they went to the Citrus Inn, 524 W. Main St. Officers had been told Sprigg was willing to pay $2,000 to have sex with and take pornographic photos of a girl between the ages of 5 and 7. An undercover detective met with Sprigg, who agreed to pay to have sex with an underage girl, police said.

A police sergeant instructed owner Bipin Patel, 44, not to tell Sprigg of their inquiries.

According to police reports released Wednesday, Patel defied the officer’s instructions and told Sprigg police were asking about him. Detectives asked that Patel face the misdemeanor charge of hindering prosecution.

Bill FitzGerald, a spokesman for the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, said a decision was made Wednesday not to charge Patel.

"There’s no crime," FitzGerald said. "Even though the officer told him not to say anything, there’s nothing in the law books making it a crime. We would hope people would be good citizens, but it’s not a prosecutable crime."

Attempts to reach Patel were unsuccessful.

Sprigg was arrested on suspicion of sexual exploitation of a minor, sexual conduct with a minor, child prostitution and possession of a prescription-only drug.

Sprigg was being held Wednesday in Maricopa County’s Madison Street Jail in Phoenix on $500,000 bail.

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