I truly believe that if you log more than a couple months stripping, you dodge bullets, literally and figuratively.
Jaren Lockhart was a dancer on Bourbon whose severed remains were found a few days after she went missing.
She was last seen leaving her club, Temptations on Bourbon, with a couple. The same couple is said to have tried luring a few other dancers to a “private party” promising $700-$800.
Too good to be true offers are just that. However, most strippers think “too good to be true” means they expect to have sex, at least oral, not just a view or a lap dance. It does not mean losing your life.
It never ceases to amaze me that guys get confused I won’t meet them at their hotels. Sure, I’ll reassure them they seem safe and normal, but I usually use the line “I only work at the club; by the time I get off, all I want to do is crash at home.”
First, let me seriously urge any girl who is comfortable with the idea of private parties or escort work, go through an agency who screens their clients thoroughly. Make the guy give you his business card and promptly look him up on LinkedIn. Know everything you can about who he is in “real life.” Just because turning tricks cor working private parties is a fantasy doesn’t make it anonymous to any stripper moonlighting or escort who has a sense of self-preservation.
Jaren was murdered in the summertime, when other strippers like me get out of dodge for greener pastures (New Orleans is HORRIBLE in the summer.) She may have been behind on bills or feeling desperate when she (allegedly) accepted the offer of her killers to go home with them.
Before you meet someone outside your club, where there is no security camera or staff, get enough info on them so they won’t DARE fuck with you, at least not to the extent of Murder 1. Tell a friend where you are and what to do if they don’t hear from you; who you are with; all their information.
I have been embarassed to see people outside my club. I let a guy come eat with me once, cause it beats eating alone, but didn’t want to be seen leaving with him. I also met a coke dealer by the door and was scared of being seen doing business with him. Maybe that’s what happened with Jaren. She didn’t want to advertise that she was leaving with this couple, because she feared judgement and indiscretion (club managers want you to sell VIP’s and split the money, not leave with people.)
In any case, there is a website “Justice for Jaren” I encourage you to visit; leave a donation or sign the guest book. One of her suspected killers is behind bars on other charges, and there are new developments in the case, which made mainstream local news today, despite Obama’s inaguration and MLK Day as potential upstagers.
I’ve gotten to know my co-workers better, and some of the regular fixtures knew Jaren. I never crossed paths with her, although we worked within three blocks of each other last February through May. One mutual friend let me see her facebook page, where I was touched to see much support and love. Facebook ghosts are an awkward phenomenon of our era, but at least the remaining profile allows people to go through the cathartic process of writing on her wall.
*If anyone close to Jaren sees this, I truly hope I haven’t offended you or her memory in the process of writing this post. I have no children, and the fact she left behind a small child breaks my heart. I can only dream of obtaining such beautiful immmortality through motherhood, having no maternal instinct myself. Jaren was an adorable young woman and it shatters me to the core that she was slain at 22; I remain grateful that I didn’t strip until age 26; it is too easy to get caught up in “the scene” if you start young. But I know I’ve had my close calls and scary moments. Every one of us Bourbon strippers IS Jaren, whether we wish to acknolwedge it or not. It could have been any of us. CARPE DIEM.