Beaver County, PA

Tactics Used

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

Beaver County is located in the northwest suburbs of Pittsburgh in Beaver County, Pennsylvania. Its population is roughly 170,000, and the county seat is the city of Beaver. Other substantial citites and towns within the Western Pennsylvania county are Beaver Falls, Aliquippa, Center Township, Ambridge, and Monaca. Prostitution has been recognized as a local problem for decades throughout Beaver County, and community complaints have played a role in police operations responding to commercial sex in the cities, towns, and boroughs. Among the problems associated with prostitution in the county are sex trafficking of adults and children, as well as the murder of a prostituted woman in 1994, and the murder of a john in 1995.

While most the effort to address prostitution in the town is directed at investigating “supply side” tactics, on at least one occasion law enforcement has targeted sex buyers for arrest. The Beaver County Sheriff’s Office frequently partners with local police departments and state agencies to conduct reverse stings.  For example, to curtail prostitution activity along one city street, the Aliquippa Police Department conducted a series of street-level reverse stings between 2001 and 2003. The operations, which employed undercover female officers as decoys, were facilitated by officers from the Beaver County Sheriff’s Office and Pennsylvania’s State Weed and Seed Initiative. One sting, conducted in June 2002, resulted in the arrest of 11 johns in 48 hours. As a warning to other would-be sex buyers, police released the names and identities of all arrestees to the local media. In the summer of 2001, officers from the Ambridge Police Department and Beaver County Sheriff’s Office conducted two street-level reverse stings in response to residents’ complaints of increased prostitution activity in certain neighborhoods. In November 2016, Center Township police reported the interception of a single john in a reverse sting using a female police informant. The arrestee reportedly arranged to meet the woman at a local hotel and pay her for sex acts. For most of the past 15 years, the Beaver Falls Police Department has had no female officers, so they have partnered with the Beaver County Drug Task Force and the Pennsylvania State Police for support.  Men arrested in the street-level operations have their identities released to the media, and are disseminated by local news outlets.

In the third annual “Report on Commercial Sexual Exploitation in Pennsylvania” (2018) by Villanova University’s Institute to Address Commercial Sexual Exploitation (CSE Institute), Beaver County was one of 10 Pennsylvania counties in which the number of individuals charged with violations of the state’s sex buying statute (§ 5902(e)) outnumbered the charged with violations of § 5902(a) for providing commercial sex since the state criminal code created separate offenses for buying and selling sex in 2014. The 10 counties were : Adams, Beaver, Bradford, Centre, Franklin, Lebanon, McKean, Mercer, Monroe, and Northampton.

In July, 2019 the fourth annual report was released by the Institute to Address Commercial Sexual Exploitation in Pennsylvania at Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law. The report presented county-level data on arrests for purchasing sex in Pennsylvania (the state has separate statutes for buying versus selling sex) during calendar year 2018. The report’s data comes from the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts, and during 2018 there were seven arrested sex buyers in Beaver County that were charged under the statute for purchasing sex (18 Pa.C.S. § 5902(e)). It is important to note that there may have been larger numbers of arrested sex buyers, since some cities and counties may choose to handle such cases by issuing civil citations for violating prostitution ordinances in local courts or magistrate’s offices, rather than charging with a state criminal offenses in district courts.

Key Partners

  • Beaver County Sheriff’s Office
  • Beaver Falls Police Department
  • Beaver County Drug Task Force
  • Aliquippa Police Department
  • Ambridge Police Department
  • Pennsylvania’s State Weed and Seed Initiative

Key Sources

John Arrests:

Reverse Stings, Shaming:

Web-Based Reverse Sting, Shaming:

Background on Local Prostitution:

  • “Woman Is Arrested at Beaver Falls”, Beaver County Times, June 22 1965.
  • “Women Accused of Prostitution”, Allegheny Times, September 13 1993.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution”, Beaver County Times, November 20 1995.
  • “Stop Crime, Beaver Falls Citizens Say”, Beaver County Times, February 10 1999.
  • “Woman Charged with Prostitution”, Beaver County Times, March 2 1999.
  • “Prostitution Sting Nets Arrest of 5 Suspects”, Beaver County Times, October 30 2002.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charged”, Beaver County Times, August 6 2003.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charge”, Beaver County Times, August 21 2003.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, September 25 2003.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charged”, Beaver County Times, October 13 2003.
  • “Beaver Falls – Woman Charged”, Beaver County Times, April 27 2004.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charged”, Beaver County Times, June 24 2004.
  • “In Brief; Police & Fire; Prostitution Charge”, Beaver County Times, August 5 2004.
  • “Beaver Falls – Woman Charged”, Beaver County Times, September 29 2004.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, October 3 2004.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, November 2 2004.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charged”, Beaver County Times, December 19 2004.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charges”, Beaver County Times, May 11 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, September 29 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Solicitation Charged”, Beaver County Times, October 1 2005.
  • “Letters to the Editor; Clean Up the Prostitutes”, Beaver County Times, October 2 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charges”, Beaver County Times, October 5 2005.
  • “Police Fight Prostitution in Beaver County”, Beaver County Times, October 16 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, October 18 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, November 17 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charge”, Beaver County Times, November 29 2005.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charged”, Beaver County Times, April 28 2006.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, June 2 2006.
  • “Beaver Falls’ New Loitering Plan Might Be Illegal”, Allegheny Times, June 6 2006.
  • “Loitering Ordinance Faces Legal Questions”, Allegheny Times, June 22 2006.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charge”, Beaver County Times, July 26 2006.
  • “Police Pose as Johns in Sting”, Beaver County Times, August 29 2007.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Charge”, Beaver County Times, November 1 2007.
  • “Beaver Falls – Prostitution Alleged”, Beaver County Times, November 15 2007.
  • “Prostitution a Problem for Beaver Falls Businesses”, Allegheny Times, January 1 2008.  
  • “Unwanted Traffic in Beaver Falls; Prostitution a Concern for Business Owners in Borough”, Beaver County Times, January 5 2008.
  • “Beaver Falls; Unwanted Entrepreneurs; Hookers a Deterrent to Commerce, Business Owners Say”, Allegheny Times, January 6 2008.
  • “Beaver Falls; Prostitution Alleged”, Allegheny Times, January 16 2008.
  • “Three Arrested in Beaver Falls Prostitution Sting”, McClatchy-Tribune Regional News, May 20 2008.
  • “Beaver Falls”, Beaver County Times, January 2 2009.
  • “In Brief; Local Reports”, Beaver County Times, November 12 2012.
  • http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2013/06/13/police-pa-prostitution-suspect-sang-rudolph/

 

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

 

Documented Violence against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

  • “Unsolved: Robin Miller, 25”, Greensburg Tribune-Review, October 2 2005.

 

 

 

State Pennsylvania
Type County
Population 166140
Location
Comments are closed.