Bethesda, MD

Tactics Used

Auto Seizure
Buyer Arrests
Community Service
Employment Loss
Identity Disclosure
IT Based Tactics
John School
License Suspension
Neighborhood Action
Public Education
Reverse Stings
SOAP Orders
Web Stings

Bethesda is an unincorporated, census-designated place of about 65,000 residents in southern Montgomery County, Maryland, located just northwest of Washington, D.C. Prostitution has been documented in the area, resulting in complaints to law enforcement. Consumer level demand provides the revenue stream for all prostitution and sex trafficking, and demand reduction tactics used in the city.  For example, in August 2019, Montgomery County Police arrested a local man and charged him with soliciting prostitution at his Bethesda home and at a massage business. The investigation began after a licensed massage and physical therapist contacted police to report the man’s solicitation the previous day. He made an appointment for a massage at his Bethesda home and during the session “made sexual comments and inappropriate sexual motions. He implied to the victim that her tip would be greater if she performed sexual acts,” according to a press release. The massage therapist also told police that the man “left a roll of cash laying on the floor in plain sight in the massage room” and twice asked if she would come to his home to provide a massage. She declined and ended the massage early because of his increasing inappropriate sexual behavior. The man texted her business phone later that day and the next day, the woman helped Vice and Intelligence Unit detectives set up a sting operation. He called her and agreed to pay her cash for sex, and was arrested when he returned to the massage business. The man was charged with solicitation for prostitution and his identity was released to the press. In November 2019, he pleaded guilty to the charge and was sentenced to three years’ probation.

Key Partners

  • Montgomery County Police Department
    • Vice and Intelligence Unit
State Maryland
Type City
Population 65092
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