Avon Township is a small city located in Stearns County, MN and has a population of approximately 2,000 residents. While tactics to reduce the demand for commercial sex and sex trafficking have been well-documented within Stearns County, instances of prostitution and sex trafficking have only recently been recorded in Avon Township. For example, in June of 2021, a 33-year-old Red Wing man was charged with 3rd-degree criminal sexual conduct involving a victim who was 13-to-15-years old, engaging in prostitution with someone 13-to-15 years-old, and engaging in sexual conduct through electronic communication. The two had met through the online chat website, Omegle and continued communicating through Snapchat. According to the complaint, the exploiter offered the 13-year-old girl $90 in exchange for sexually exploitive acts. In addition, the victim had claimed to be 15 years old and the exploiter had claimed to be 17 years old. The two met at a cemetery in Avon Township in late June. A few days later, when the guardian of the young girl came across multiple messages from men on her phone, in addition to a conversation with a friend reporting that she had met the offender. Deputies messaged the offender from the girl’s Snapchat asking to meet at a local elementary school, where he was arrested upon his arrival. The offender’s identity, photo, age, charges, and location were included in reports by local news sources.
Web-Based Reverse Sting and Shaming: