by Paul Bowers
The Citadel's senior associate athletic director was arrested Sept. 5 in an undercover prostitution sting in North Charleston.
According to a school spokesperson, Robert Paul Plunkett was suspended without pay today, pending a review through the college's employee discipline policy.
The arrest came at the hands of the North Charleston Police Department SPEED Team (Selective Police Enforcement to Enhance and Deter), a unit that deals with community complaints, vice cases, and narcotics operations. According to an incident report, an officer was posing as "a street-level prostitute" in the area of Remount Road and Dobson Drive when Plunkett drove up in his car and asked if she needed a ride. The officer told him yes and asked him to meet her a block away on Leiderman Street.
When the undercover officer approached Plunkett's car on Leiderman Street, Plunkett asked if she needed "a quick ride." The officer then asked, "Do you just want some quick head?" According to the report, Plunkett said yes, and the officer replied, "How much are you looking to spend?" to which Plunkett replied, "$30."
At this point, other officers who had been monitoring the situation moved in, conducted a traffic stop, and placed Plunkett under arrest on a charge of solicitation for prostitution. A Citadel spokesman says Plunkett pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge.
According to his profile on the Citadel sports website, Plunkett is a 1973 graduate of the public military college. As a student, he received eight varsity letters in baseball, football, and basketball. He served for 23 years in the Air Force, spending much of that time overseeing recreation programs. He also spent six years as general manager of two country clubs in south Georgia.