Clarksburg, WV

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

Clarksburg is a city of about 16,000 residents located in the northwest portion of of West Virginia, in Harrison County near Morgantown.  Prostitution has been identified as a substantial problem in the city, particularly in the form of prostitution rings and other indoor prostitution.

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 Clarksburg Police Department and collaborating agencies have conducted reverse stings.  For example, in June, 2010, ten people were charged after a drug task force broke up a prostitution ring in Clarksburg.  The reverse sting was part of a joint undercover operation between the Harrison Lewis Drug Task Force and the Street Crimes Unit.  The names and ages of the arrestees were released to news outlets.

In August, 2016 Clarksburg Police conducted a reverse sting that resulted in six men taken into custody, and their identities disclosed in news releases. Each of the men was accused of soliciting prostitution from vehicles in downtown Clarksburg. Female undercover officers were used in the sting.  The Harrison County Magistrate set at $1,000 the cash bond for each defendant, and also informed the men of their requirement to obtain HIV testing and related counseling as part of their bond condition. The reverse sting is aimed at curbing prostitution in Downtown Clarksburg area by taking away the demand for illegal sex. Participating in the operation were: the Greater Harrison County Drug and Violent Drug Task Force, Clarksburg Police, Fairmont Police, the Three Rivers Drug Task Force, and the Mountaineer Highway Interdiction Team South

Key Partners

  • Clarksburg Police Department
  • Harrison Lewis Drug Task Force
  • Greater Harrison County Drug and Violent Drug Task Force
  • Fairmont Police Departmenr
  • Three Rivers Drug Task Force
  • Mountaineer Highway Interdiction Team South
State West Virginia
Type City
Population 15784
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