CAMILLA, Ga. -- A mutual sex act involving the cutting of clothes led to the arrest of Claire Fox Hillard, clad in a towel, on a charge of loitering Wednesday night, state reports filed by police officers who responded to Hillard's late-night call for help from a flower shop and to a related complaint about two prowlers in the same area.
Hillard, the conductor and music director of the Albany Symphony Orchestra and a Darton College instructor, first claimed that two black men assaulted him and cut his clothes, according to the report, which The Albany Herald obtained Friday through a Georgia Open Records request.
In his narrative portion of the report, responding Officer Kevin Hodge wrote that Hillard recanted his initial claim, admitting that "he and a white female" were "engaged in a sexual act on the property that the complaint called about. The male subject (Hillard) stated that the female fled the scene (as) we pulled up attempting to locate them.
He stated that the clothes that were cut lying on the ground was part of the sexual act."
Hodge was one of the Camilla police officers who was responding to a citizen's complaint of prowlers behind a Scott Street business around 11:15 p.m. Wednesday.
Initial contact with Hillard was made by officer Derreck Manning in response to a call for help that Hillard, clad in a towel he had wrapped around himself, made from the Martha's Flowers & Gift Shop near the building where the prowlers were reported to be.
Manning said Hillard first told him that he was at a Shell gas station and convenience store on U.S. Highway 19 North "when two black males confronted him with a gun and ordered him to drive them to the rear parking lot of Dr. Bashiru's Office located at 35 S. Scott Street and then ordered him out of his vehicle and cut off his clothes and took his car keys and then ran off."
After Manning further questioned him, Hillard "admitted he had been deceptive about telling me that he had been robbed," Manning wrote.
"Mr. Hillard recanted his original story and stated that he had not been robbed at all."
Manning wrote that Hillard said he came to the Scott Street parking lot "after meeting a white female in Thomasville, Ga. to engage in sexual intercourse with her, and after cutting her clothes off she ran off."
Manning said Hillard told him the woman was "spooked when she thought she heard the police coming."
When the woman fled the alley behind the AT&T building, Hillard hid in the bushes behind the flower shop, the report said. Manning then took Hillard to Hodge, who was investigating the report of two prowlers at the AT&T building on Scott Street. That building is close to both the doctor's office and the flower shop.
Hodge said Hillard admitted to him the details of the encounter with the woman, who he said he met at a dinner party in Thomasville, where she agreed to follow him to Camilla "for this sexual act."
Hodge said he instructed Hillard to contact the woman, but he failed to "because of incorrect numbers."
Hillard, according to the cover sheet of the report, was charged with loitering and false report of a crime. The report does not say why or when the false report charge was dropped, but Camilla Police Investigator Robert Casterline told The Herald on Thursday that the only outstanding charge against Hillard was loitering/prowling.
Ripley Bell, an Albany lawyer representing Hillard, did not "have any comment on the situation."
Hillard did not return a phone call from The Albany Herald on Friday.
In a telephone interview with The Herald on Thursday, Hillard told the newspaper he was accosted by two men at a gas station and that he discarded his clothing because gas was spilled on them. He also denied that he met a woman at a party.
Multiple messages left on the Albany Symphony Orchestra's telephone answering machine were not returned Friday.
In response to a request for a statement, Darton College officials said: "Darton College has no comment on the story at this time."