Joe Friday: Never Paid for the Scene-update

Porn Valley- I’m old enough to remember when the original Dragnet TV show ruled the roost on Thursday nights. Sgt. Joe Friday would go, “Just the facts, mam.” Today I got just the facts from porn performer Joe Friday who appropriated the name for obvious reasons. Friday is a San Francisco cop and Reina Leone’s husband.

Friday and Leone have been making national and world headlines this week for their participation in a sex video which they never got paid for since it was done in trade. That they appeared in a sex video to begin with wouldn’t be out of the ordinary if not for the other fact that Friday and Leone are both cops and are now facing career juncture situations

Now with the cat out of a lot of different bags, Friday said he and Leone have decided to take off from the Bay area to be in Porn Valley with some of their closer friends in the adult industry and to find some work at the same time. Friday says they’ve been avoiding calls from the mainstream press until he sits down with an attorney to determine what he can and can’t say.

“It is an open investigation up there,” he states.

I asked Friday about some of the implications offered by the media to suggest that nothing will probably happen to them, as far as their jobs are concerned.

“Believe me it’s not that they [their employers] won’t; it’s that they can’t,” says Friday. “They’re using everything they can and trying to dig and find stuff that they can use. But I think they’re having a hard time trying to come up with with anything that will be a disciplinary issue other than secondary employment-stuff.”

I felt incumbent to ask Friday, who was on Selena and Kent Silver’s show on KSEX, Wednesday night along with Leone, some obvious questions about logistics. For one thing I was curious that, with the kind of jobs he and Leone had, where did they find time to moonlight, downstate, as porn stars.

Friday, a patrolman of four years, said he works four days a week. “I have a lot of days off and we have vacation time,” he explained. “We’ll spend a week at a time down here, things like that. It actually wasn’t very hard finding the time.”

I was curious about the tape itself which is titled Bus Stop Whores and the circumstances that led to its discovery. Friday also tells me he and Leone shot it two years ago for Buck Adams.

“My understanding,” says Friday, “is that an officer received a call from another co-worker. The guy said, hey, come check this out. You’re not going to believe this. The cop drove over there. They looked at it and downloaded it on to a disc. They brought it back to the station and started playing it for all the cops in the station that night. After he finished doing that, he started sending it out to all the other stations in the city. Then he called up my station and the firestorm started from there.”

Friday said after the situation stewed in his department for a day, someone sent a disc to the Sheriff’s department where Leone works. “She works at the county hospital. Everyone was talking about it, so one of the nursing employees- a unit secretary up there- took it upon herself to be personally offended by it. She’s this 400-pound whale that never had a good life, ever. Being personally offended by it, she sends it to the hospital administrator and the administrators of the Department of Public Health. Then an e-mail was sent to the Bay area major media stations. And that’s how the media got involved.”

Friday’s not sure what happens next. “They’re still trying to figure out what they’re going to do with it,” he says. “They put me in an administrative position, which is, basically, behind a desk.”

Friday says he’ll remain there until things cool down. “We’re still on full duty. We have no restrictions and there’ been no disciplinary action taken. But this is going to be whenever they decide to take care of it. With the media pressure, it’s going to have to be soon. I would imagine by the time I get back up to the Bay area this week that my union and attorney’s will have some answers.”

And, as you might expect, Friday says the Internal Affairs dept. is handling the case.

Regarding the tape, Friday laughs. “Out of everything that we’ve done and shot and worked in, this particular scene was shot about two years ago,” he recalls. “Originally it was supposed to be a photo shoot for Reina, and it was a trade-shoot for her website. The idea was that she was going to do a solo photo shoot and that she and I might do a hardcore photo scene together, just for stills. When we got there, the director- Buck Adams- informed us that we were doing an actual video, a boy-girl scene.

“The pick-up line was that I as trying to find a school girl, college student, something like that, who was standing at a bus stop. The idea was to be convincing her to see if she would be willing to come back to the studio an model. And, obviously, we’re trying to talk her into doing a hardcore scene. That was the idea. We did it. It was done for trade so we got a full copy and full rights to use the scene however we wanted. And they had the rights to use the scene for, I guess, his website project. At the time he idn’t know what he was going to use it for or what the title would be or anything like that.

“We shot the scene and she did the photo shoot that day,” Friday continued. “A couple of weeks later we received the DVD of the scene. Everything was fine. The funny thing was it was a free scene; we never received any money for it. It’s kind of ironic that, of all scenes, this is what was found. It was on the Internet. We had never seen the footage out anywhere. We first thought the video got buried pr never used. It wasn’t like he paid nybody to do any work in it anyway. I wasn’t sure what he did with it. Then it shows up on a website. I don’t have any problem with that, but that’s what was found.”

Asked what made him decide to get into law enforcement, Friday notes that he had been a fire fighter/paramedic for five years prior. “I was looking for a little bit of a change and decided I’ll give it a shot.”

In his four years on the beat, Friday has certainly encountered his share of drama, noting a recent string of homicides, along with the fact that one of his co-workers had been shot and killed four weeks ago. “Crime on officers has been increasing a lot lately,” he tells me. “People have been taking a lot more pop shots at us when they can. Where I work is the equivalent of working east L.A. or south central.”

I asked Friday about the charges of police corruption which have apparently been rife in the SFPD. He concedes that there’s been ongoing scandal the last two years. “There’s always something.” Friday’s take on the whole situation right now is that it’s a paycheck every two weeks. “With the politics and the scandals, a lot of people have lost motivation and morale,” he states candidly.

Asked if push came to shove, would Friday and Leone consider the porn industry full time? No two ways about him, according to Friday who points out that no one in the industry had a clue as to what he and Leone did.

“We came down this week to be with some friends. We’ve made a lot of close, personal friends and who are business owners. We actually came down to fill them in on everything that’s going on. But the media beat us to it.”

I was curious how a matter like this weighs on Friday’s ability to work on camera. So far, he hasn’t attempted a scene since the scandal broke. But the thought hasn’t escaped him, either. Friday says he’d like to get a scene in either today or tomorrow before going home for the weekend. “Reina’s been shooting down here all week, and she’s been getting plenty of scenes. My next scene isn’t until next week. I guess we’ll see then, huh?”

I was wondering if Leone was seeing a spike in her popularity as a result of the scandal. Friday says they’re just starting to see it the last two days. “She’s been getting a lot of requests coming in, especially with a company that we’ve been working for in the past. People are interested in her now and it’s kind of ironic that this happened now because in the last few weeks, more companies had been taking an interest in her. So it’s all been coming to a head.”

Friday says Leone’s interest isn’t to work full time in the industry. “I know she wants to work with some different companies and different projects. But as far as a day-to-day thing, it isn’t something that we’ve really thought about.”

Friday and Leone’s story has certainly touched other lives all acros the board. “Obviously our closest friends at home had no idea we did this,” he says. “Our parents, relatives- nobody had a clue. Everybody turned on the TV two days ago and my name and face and her name and face were in the media. The way the media is handling this is, they’re trying to put shame on us and embarrass us- things like that. It’s been kind of hard to deal with it. Reina’s having a harder time with it than I am.”

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