Spokane Prosecutor, Larry Steinmetz, contends in court documents that Cody Castagna and three others attempted to blackmail former Rep. Richard Curtis in October, after the two men had sex in Curtis’s hotel room. Arrest warrants were issued for the four men on December 12th.
Castagna turned himself into authorities after telling reporters, “I’m not going to run, I have nothing to hide”.
Curtis alleged that Castagna stole his wallet and tried to extort $1,000 from him after the two had sex. Castagna said the money was in exchange for sex, prostitution not extortion. He says that he was given the wallet as “collateral” until he got the cash he was rightfully owed.
Castagna is being charged with three counts of second-degree theft of a credit card, one count of second-degree extortion and one count of conspiracy to commit second-degree extortion. Castagna’s brother Joseph L. Castagna, friends Robert H. Fletcher and Brandon D. Burchell are all being charged with second-degree extortion and conspiracy to commit second-degree extortion.
According to court documents, Curtis met Cody Castagna in an adult book store and then at a hotel. Castagna told police he agreed to have unprotected sex for $1,000, but Curtis then refused to pay.
Later that evening, Curtis woke up and found that Castagna had left the room. His wallet, credit cards and Washington State Legislature identification were missing, prosecutors allege. Castagna later called Curtis, demanded $1,000 and threatened to go to his family and the press if he did not pay. Curtis left $200 at the hotel’s front desk for Castagna, and Fletcher picked up the money, prosecutors allege.
Castagna demanded additional money from Curtis, and Joseph Castagna and Burchell helped Cody plan the pickup of the additional money. Curtis called police to complain he was being blackmailed. He did not want them to file charges, he just wanted his wallet back.
Curtis denied offering to pay Castagna for sex, but acknowledged giving him $100 for “gas money,” police reports said. He also denied having any sexual contact with Castagna, and told reporters that he was not gay. He has now admitted publicly to having sex with Castagna.
Lead investigator, Sgt. Joe Peterson said in a statement, “we’ve been told by other people that this is not the first time the suspects in this case have done this type of thing.” Peterson could not be reached for further clarification.
Steinmetz could not be reached for comment as to whether or not he would be introducing Castagna’s sexually explicit past. Castagna performed in a “hardcore” pornographic video and has “modeled” on various gay-porn websites.