Seattle’s new $150,000-a-year ‘street czar’ once worked as a Las Vegas pimp who recruited girls as young as 16 for wealthy clients and got one pregnant, while enjoying a lavish lifestyle wearing alligator-skin shoes, custom-made Versace suits and a $90,000 Rolex.
In court testimony during his 2000 pandering trial, one of Andrè Taylor’s victims told how she miscarried his baby in a San Diego jail cell while her pimp lived the high life with homes in San Francisco and Las Vegas off the money she and other women made selling their bodies.
Cheryl Davis, 20 at the time, told the court she moved into his $300,000 home with him and two other prostitutes in 1997 just after her 18th birthday.
Taylor – who went by the name ‘Gorgeous Dre’ – would then send her and the other women out seven days a week to meet wealthy clients at Vegas haunts Caesars Palace, the Mirage and New York New York as well as sending them on trips to Los Angeles.
‘We’d get up, go to work, come home and go to sleep,’ she testified.
The former pimp has now emerged as an unlikely ally to Seattle officials, signing a $150,000 deal with Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office on July 27 to work as its community liaison, according to the contract published by PubliCola last week.
As part of the $12,500 a month deal, Taylor will provide recommendations to the city on de-escalation, community engagement, and alternatives to policing as Seattle Durkan aims to improve relations between law enforcement and community members in the wake of multiple cop killings of black men and women across America.
Seattle’s new $150,000-a-year ‘street czar’ Andrè Taylor once worked as a Las Vegas pimp who recruited girls as young as 16 for wealthy clients and got one pregnant, while enjoying a lavish lifestyle wearing alligator-skin shoes, custom-made Versace suits and a $90,000 Rolex
Taylor in the cover to his audio book memoir. In court testimony during his 2000 pandering trial, one victim told how she miscarried his baby in a San Diego jail cell while her pimp lived the high life off the money she and other women made selling their bodies
Taylor, who has now turned his life around as a community activist and offers $500 an hour life coaching sessions, revealed in 1999 documentary ‘American Pimp’ that he believed ‘prostitution cuts down on rape, really a lot’ and that the ‘best pimps are the best men’.
‘The best pimps are made from the best men, men of character and substance and principle,’ he told filmmakers in the footage that prosecutors would later use to put him behind bars.
But the glamour wasn’t all that it seemed and Taylor also said in the film ‘the pimp lifestyle [was] a lonely one’.
Taylor, now 52, learned the trade from his father after he himself was ‘born from the womb of a prostitute from the seed of a pimp’.
His former pimp father Mel Taylor leaped to his son’s defense at his trial, penning a letter to US District Judge Howard McKibben saying ‘he is no more a pimp now than I am.’
Taylor with his wife Athena or ‘Dove’. Athena, who he married in 1998, stood by him during his trial and conviction, with the Las Vegas Sun reporting that the couple exchanged loving smiles throughout the days in court
Taylor pictured in 1999 in the documentary ‘American Pimp’ where he told filmmakers he believed ‘prostitution cuts down on rape, really a lot’ and that the ‘best pimps are the best men’
Taylor’s escapades as the pimp ‘Gorgeous Dre’ were featured in the documentary ‘American Pimp’ (pictured). It was then used to convict him in 2000
Taylor also told the judge he knew his actions were an ‘immoral thing before God’ and that he had found religion but added that ‘I can apologize for my past but there are some good things that I learned from then also’.
However, McKibben branded Taylor’s actions ‘reprehensible’ and said he saw ‘great fear’ in the eyes of one victim – an underage prostitute – who the pimp transported across several state lanes.
The girl, known only by the alias ‘Astin’ because she was 16, told the court how she was introduced to prostitution by Taylor and was flown from Florida to Las Vegas to San Francisco to work for him.
Also key to the trial was unedited Hollywood footage from the documentary ‘American Pimp’ that prosecutors subpoenaed and used to prove his pimp prowess.
Filmmaker Allen Hughes reluctantly testified against Taylor at his trial and confirmed he paid Taylor $10,000 to be a technical consultant on the documentary.
Taylor had hoped the film, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, would be the springboard he needed to follow his dreams of making it big as a rapper.
Two thousand copies of his debut album, titled ‘The Big Pimp’ and featuring a song about a Las Vegas Metro Police sergeant, instead collected dust in his garage before being seized by cops.
Newspaper clippings from his 2000 trial where victim Cheryl Davis, 20 at the time, told the court she moved into his $300,000 home with him and two other prostitutes in 1997 just after her 18th birthday
Taylor was convicted of seven prostitution-related counts, three involving the 16-year-old girl, two involving adult women and two money-laundering counts and was sentenced in January 2000 to 5-and-a-half years in prison and slapped with a $10,000 fine.
He also pleaded guilty to pandering charges at Clark County District Court before this conviction – and had served a prison stint for pandering in 1994.
Fast forward to 2020 and, after serving just one year of his prison stint, Taylor is married to wife of 22 years Athena – or ‘Dove’ – and boasts that he has a son who graduated from Yale and daughter from UCLA.
Athena, who he married in 1998, stood by him during his trial and conviction for prostitution, with the Las Vegas Sun reporting that the couple exchanged loving smiles throughout the days in court.
It was Athena who Taylor also worked with in setting up Not This Time – the nonprofit now working in partnership with Seattle’s City Hall – after his brother Che was shot dead by cops in February 2016 in the Wedgwood neighborhood of the city.
Andrè Taylor (pictured left in 2017, and recently right) turned his life around and signed a deal with the city on July 27 to work as its community liaison
Taylor, now 52, (pictured as a baby with his mom) was born to pimp father and prostitute mother. He said he learned the pimp trade from his father after he was ‘born from the womb of a prostitute from the seed of a pimp’
His former pimp father Mel Taylor leaped to his son’s defense at his trial, penning a letter to US District Judge Howard McKibben saying ‘he is no more a pimp now than I am’. Pictured Andre with his father around 1987
Police were carrying out an undercover drug operation and said Che had reached for a gun and refused to comply with their commands when they opened fire.
At an inquest, jurors unanimously agreed Che complied with officers’ orders to show his hands and had moved his body position down toward the floor after officers ordered him to get on the ground.
No charges were ever filed against the cops involved in the case.
Taylor arrived in the city after his brother’s death and vowed to go to war over his killing.
At a press conference with the NAACP, he warned: ‘I’m here to go to war.
‘I will be unrelenting to get justice for my little brother.’
He and Athena then founded Not This Time, which champions statewide police reforms, holds police accountable and connects relatives of people killed by police with local leaders to push for reforms.
The nonprofit is credited with being a major force behind the city changing its police use of force laws through initiative I-940.
This bill, signed into law by Governor Jay Inslee in 2019, reformed the law meaning cops can be charged over their use of deadly force if a ‘reasonable officer’ would not have acted that way.
Taylor was convicted in 2000 of seven prostitution-related counts and sentenced to 5-and-a-half years, serving around one year
Taylor (left in 1995 and right more recently) admitted in the 1999 documentary ‘the pimp lifestyle [was] a lonely one’
Before this, cops could only be charged if prosecutors could prove they had acted with malice.
Taylor’s contract with Seattle officials, which includes an office in the city’s Municipal Tower, and his new title as the city’s ‘street czar’ was his idea, reported Seattle Times.
He told the news outlet he is the man for the job because of his past as ‘not too many people can go talk to gangbangers in their territory, and then go talk to the government in their territory.’
Taylor said he has ‘particular genius in a particular area’ and can talk to ‘gang members, pimps and prostitutes’ who ‘won’t sit down with anybody else,’ reported KOMO News.
‘Black people as a whole have not been in a place to be compensated for their genius or their work for a very, very long time,’ he said.
He has now turned his life around as a community activist Taylor founded nonprofit Not This Time after his brother Che was shot dead by Seattle cops in 2016 It helped change police use of force laws in Seattle He is married to wife of 22 years Athena and has authored two books
He went to Seattle and vowed ‘war’ against the city after Che’s death. Taylor listens to an attorney speak about the decision by Prosecutor Dan Satterberg that criminal charges against the two cops would not be filed
Che Taylor (pictured) was shot dead by Seattle cops in 2016
Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office did not immediately return DailyMail.com’s request for comment but told the Seattle Times the partnership would ‘help de-escalate the ongoing situation’ by allowing the city to tap into Taylor’s ‘lived experience with the criminal legal system’.
‘The City’s Department of Neighborhoods entered into a contract with Not This Time so that the organization could help de-escalate the ongoing situation in and around Cal Anderson Park,’ spokesperson Kelsey Nyland said in the statement.
‘The City sought a contract with Not This Time because of our existing working partnership… but also because of the organization’s lived experience with the criminal legal system, and their history of successful advocacy and activism on issues of policing and dismantling systemic racism.’
The mayor’s office said the city has also entered into similar contracts with other community groups.
Not This Time is also developing a program to support the mental health of black people leaving prison as they reintegrate into the community.
The nonprofit also worked with the city in 2019 on a $100,000 contract to host a speaker series called ‘Conversation with the Streets’.
The latest partnership comes after Taylor spoke out publicly this year against the controversial CHOP zone, which started as a peaceful occupation of a police precinct before turning into the site of two deadly shootings.
CHOP zone being dismantled. Taylor publicly sided with Mayor Durkan in calls to dismantle the zone but was exposed on a secret recording urging occupiers to ‘leave with something’ and offering to negotiate a financial package with the city on their behalf
Taylor speaking with a protester at the CHOP zone on June 29. He publicly condemned the zone for its violence and made an appearance alongside Lorenzo Anderson’s father urging for peace
Protesters occupied several blocks around a park and the Seattle Police Department’s East Precinct after officers abandoned the building on June 8 following clashes with demonstrators calling for an end to police brutality and racism in the wake of George Floyd’s ‘murder’ in Minneapolis.
Lorenzo Anderson, 19, was shot dead in the zone on June 20 and Antonio Mays Jr., 16, was killed on June 29 and cops cleared the area and reclaimed the precinct days later.
Taylor, who led one of the first protests in the city over Floyd’s Memorial Day ‘murder’, publicly condemned the zone for its violence and made an appearance alongside Anderson’s father urging for peace.
He joined forces with Durkan at a press conference on June 22 after Anderson’s death and as the city grappled to take back control of the area, telling reporters: ‘I feel like I cannot help the situation now because of the violence that will probably continue.’
Taylor was criticized by some protesters who accused him of siding with the mayor.
Despite his public stance in support of the mayor, the community activist was then caught on a secret recording encouraging occupiers to ‘leave with something’ and offering to negotiate a million-dollar financial package with the city on their behalf in return for leaving CHOP.
‘I’m advising you to leave,’ Taylor told CHOP activists during the conversation at a South Seattle restaurant.
Andre with wife Athena around 2000. The couple created Not This Time together
‘Let me go before you to the mayor. Leave with resources, money for the community. Then you win.’
He proposed that he could go to Durkan and negotiate money on their behalf.
”Listen, I went down and talked [to the CHOP activists]… They’re so serious about this space, they’re willing to die. But we have an out. They’re more concerned about being able to have some money for communities that are devastated right now, and if we can move that, they’ll be willing to leave’,’ he said he could put to Durkan.
‘So don’t just leave. Leave with something.’
He added: ‘You gotta get something. Let me make that happen for you, and then I can bring that back to you. I don’t know, we’ll ask for $2 million. They might give us $1 million, but let’s ask for it.
‘Because the reason why we’re holding that space is not only for George Floyd but for the millions of George Floyds.’
Taylor has since defended his comments and insisted the mayor knew nothing of his proposals to the CHOP occupants.
‘They wanted to defund [the police] and to redistribute funds. I told them they could go to the mayor and ask her for a certain amount,’ he told Seattle Times.
Taylor got a taste for public speaking when he surfaced as a guest lecturer for a UNLV Criminal Justice course taught by his probation officer on his release from prison. Pictured in 2020 speaking at a service for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery in Seattle
‘I was concerned about the protesters leaving that space without having some type of win. They were concerned about the safety of being there. I agreed with them about that. But at the same time, I was telling them, ‘Don’t leave without a win.”
He said he wanted to help ‘get some real action for the community’ and that he ‘would do it again’.
CHOP activist Javi Cordero who was at the meeting with Taylor said the group felt his suggestions were ‘off’.
‘After the meeting, I thought ‘this feels off,’ talked about it with some other activists, and we never followed up with Andrè,’ Cordero told Seattle Times.
Taylor got a taste for public speaking when he surfaced as a guest lecturer for a UNLV Criminal Justice course taught by his probation officer on his release from prison.
Now, he can also list author on his resume, having published two books – ‘The Road to Paradise’ and ‘You can still win!’ – about his life’s turnaround.
He also featured in follow-up to the now infamous American Pimp, ‘Master of the Game’.