Allegany County is a county in the northwestern of Maryland and has a population of approximately 68,000 residents. Its county seat is Cumberland, MD. Instances of prostitution and sex trafficking have been well-documented in Allegany County. Among the more serious issues associated with the commercial sex market is sex trafficking. For example, in June of 2018, the Cumberland Police Department arrested nine individuals on charges relating to prostitution and human trafficking in the city’s downtown area. The arrests were made as a result of an eight-week investigation that was launched in response to complaints from citizens, businesses, and visitors concerning the solicitation of prostitution. Cumberland Police were assisted by the Allegany County Combined Criminal Investigation Unit and Hagerstown Police Department’s Directed Patrol Unit. The nine arrested sex buyers, had attempted to solicit sex from an undercover police officer. Arrested sex buyers were charged with solicitation of prostitution, and their identities were included in press releases.
Shaming and loss of employment are also consequences of sex buying in the county. For example, in December of 2020, a news article in the Cumberland Times News reported that a Maryland State Police report outlined allegations of prostitution, drug distribution, and sexual harassment that surround the sudden exit of Allegany County Department of Emergency Services officials nearly two years prior. The former EMS Director and the former EMS Division Chief both resigned from the department early in 2019 amid rumors of inappropriate activities alleged to have occurred at the EMS department. No reasons were provided at the time for the abrupt decisions to resign, with county officials citing personnel policies that prohibited them from commenting. News reports provided extensive details of the police investigation into the matter, and detailed allegations that included soliciting prostitution.
Reverse Stings, Shaming:
- http://www.times-news.com/news/local_news/charged-in-cumberland-area-prostitution-sting (2018)
- http://www.times-news.com/news/local_news/charged-in-prostitution-sting/article (2018)
- http://www.times-news.com/news/local_news/police-make-14th-arrest-in-cumberland-prostitution-sting (2018)
- https://www.wcbcradio.com/?news=frostburg-man-arrested-for-solicitation-of-prostitution (2018)
Loss of Employment:
- https://www.times-news.com/news/local_news/police-reports-detail-investigations-of-former-des-officials/article_760bae48-40af-11eb-9f76-2b1af3b19407.html (2020)
- https://www.times-news.com/news/local_news/about-telling-the-truth-nurse-details-sexual-harassment-at-des/article_a490690c-4177-11eb-b4ce-aff20180b099.html (2020)
- https://www.dailyadvent.com/news/6aac259ad0eb610b3e262741810da868-Police-reports-detail-investigations-of-former-DES-officials (2020)
Background on Prostitution and Sex Trafficking in the Region: