Albany, NY

Tactics Used

Buyer Arrests
Reverse stings
Shaming
Auto seizure
Community service
Public education
Neighborhood action
SOAP orders
John school
Letters
Cameras
Web stings
License suspension

Albany is a city of approximately 100,000 residents; it is the seat of Albany County and the capital of New York. Prostitution and sex trafficking activity have been well-documented in the city and surrounding communities, and in unincorporated areas of the county. This activity and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement agencies from residents and businesses. Among the more serious crimes associated with the local commercial sex market is child sex trafficking.

Consumer level demand provides the revenue stream for all prostitution and sex trafficking, and has therefore been targeted by local law enforcement agencies as a strategy for prevention and response. To identify and apprehend local sex buyers driving the prostitution and sex trafficking markets, the Albany Police Department and Albany County Sheriff’s Office have conducted street-level reverse stings and web stings to identify and arrest sex buyers. Operations typically employ one or more undercover female officers, who pose as decoys. When men attempt to solicit sex from the officers, they are quickly arrested. In addition to releasing offenders’ names to local media outlets, the APD began posting buyers’ names on mobile electronic billboards along downtown thoroughfares in late 2009.

Loss of employment is another consequence of buying sex that has occurred within the city. For example, in 2008, the Governor of New York resigned in response to a scandal in which his frequent sex buying had become publicized. In May, 2019, an Albany police officer pleaded guilty to driving while ability impaired by alcohol. The plea stemmed from an incident earlier that year where the officer shot and killed a man in Utica who tried to rob him while he was meeting up with a prostituted woman. He was cleared of murder charges after a judge determined it was self defense. He remained charged with soliciting prostitution for which he has pleaded not guilty. The  resigned from the Albany Police force while his prostitution charge was being prosecuted.

 

 

Key Sources

John Arrests:

Reverse Stings:

Shaming:

Sex Buyer Fired or Resigned Due to Arrest:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

  • “Prostitution Probed in Albany South End”, Schenectady Gazette, July 21 1977.
  • “Troy Man Jailed in Washington Park Prostitution Case”, Albany Times Union, October 11 1986.
  • “Man Accused of Posing as Policeman in Sex Case”, Albany Knickerbocker News, October 31 1986.
  • “Albany Pair Face Vice Counts”, Albany Knickerbocker News, April 22 1987.
  • “Area Couple Face Vice Counts”, Albany Knickerbocker News, January 22 1988.
  • “Hooker Activity on Rise; Women Plying Trade in Albany”, Albany Times Union, September 9 1990.
  • “Unhappy Hookers”, Albany Times Union, September 16 1990.
  • “Neighbors Worry Motel Will Leave the Red Light On”, Albany Times Union, June 11 1998.
  • “Five Face Charges in Albany Prostitution Sting”, Schenectady Daily Gazette, July 25 2003.
  • “Police Say 17 Arrested in Prostitution Ring Used Web Sites”, Schenectady Daily Gazette, May 16 2007.
  • “Six People Arrested in Two Prostitution Stings”, ABC/WTEN-TV 10, May 20 2010.

Documented Violence against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

State New York
Type City
Population 97478
Location
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