Ex-Waco police officer indicted on solicitation of prostitution charge

Officer has been arrested three times on sexual misconduct charges
Willy Rafael Lopez. (Jail photo)
Willy Rafael Lopez. (Jail photo)(KWTX)
Published: Mar. 30, 2023 at 5:32 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - A former Waco police officer who has been arrested three times on sexual misconduct charges since 2018 was indicted Thursday on a solicitation of prostitution charge.

A McLennan County grand jury indicted Willy Rafael Lopez, 40, on the state jail felony charge, which is punishable by up to two years in a state jail.

Lopez was arrested in October 2021 after he showed up at a Waco hotel to meet what he thought was a prostitute, but was met again by officers.

Lopez was a Waco police officer for five years before he was fired after his first arrest in 2018. Instead of a prostitute, Lopez was met at the hotel room door by Joseph Scaramucci, a sheriff’s office human trafficking investigator.

Recognizing the officer, Lopez said, “I learned my lesson the first time. Can you let me go?” Scaramucci said after Lopez’s arrest.

An arrest affidavit filed by Scaramucci says Lopez responded to an ad for commercial sex the detective placed online.

“Lopez indicated he wanted to meet with undercover officers to pay for sex, and was provided a fee to carry out the sex acts,” according to the affidavit. “Lopez later arrived at the predetermined location to carry out the acts, and was in possession of the currency to carry out the acts. Lopez was known to me at the time, as I previously arrested him for the same offense in 2018. At the time of that offense Lopez was employed as a Waco Police Officer, who investigated crimes related to prostitution and human trafficking.”

Lopez surrendered his law enforcement license after his 2018 arrest as a condition of being accepted into the McLennan County District Attorney’s Office pretrial diversion program. He also was charged with invasive visual recording, a state jail felony. An officer seized his phone and found a video of Lopez having sex with a prostitute at his Waco apartment and the woman was unaware the recording was being made, officials said.

Lopez successfully completed the diversion program and both charges were dismissed, according to court records.