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Clermont County is a county located in southwestern Ohio and has a population of approximately 206,000 residents. Prostitution and sex trafficking are well-documented problems in the county. For example, in September 2012, three people were arrested as the result of an investigation into a prostitution ring operating out of a local mobile home park. According to reports, the Goshen Township Police Department had received an anonymous tip regarding suspected prostitution activity occurring there. Undercover police officers arranged “false sexual encounters and prices over the phone,” which led to the three arrests. As a result of the investigation, two women were arrested and charged with prostitution and a man was arrested and charged with promoting prostitution. All three suspects were transported to the Clermont County Jail. Local violence associated to the sex trade has included the robbery of sex buyers and others. For example, in December, 2017, investigators captured a woman following a long hunt to make her face charges in a robbery-via-prostitution case in Goshen. Members of the city’s fugitive apprehension unit arrested her on two warrants in the southern Chicago suburb of Matteson, Illinois. The case involved the robbery of a Goshen man and his parents by three people at the parents’ home in December, 2015. The robbery victim (the sex buyer) solicited a woman through the website, Backpage.com. As they had sex in a basement bedroom, the woman sent a text, and two men came into the home, held the victim and his parents at gunpoint, robbing them of cash and electronics, as well as the victim’s car. The gunman was arrested in Mishawaka, was convicted in Michigan on robbery and criminal confinement charges, and was then sentenced to 5 to 15 years in prison. Additional crimes occurring in local prostitution transactions include drug and weapons offenses.
Between April and June 2017, the Sharonville Police Department, FBI, Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, Cincinnati Police Department, Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Office, and U.S. Marshals Service were involved in the arrest of four men from the Cincinnati area. The men were indicted on federal violations as suspects in the prostitution and sexual exploitation of a minor from Clermont County. The individuals were charged following the recovery of the minor by officers at a local motel.
Identity disclosure and loss of employment are consequences of buying sex that have occurred within the county. For example, in February 2012, a warrant was issued for the arrest of the former Clermont County Commissioner, who resigned the day before he was charged in Kentucky for soliciting prostitution and trafficking of a controlled substance. The Kenton County, KY Attorney’s Office along with the Kentucky State Police released an announcement that they had issued the charges, both of which were misdemeanors. According to the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office, the investigation stemmed from information detectives received from a Clermont County Jail inmate in June 2011, who said the man had provided her drugs and money in exchange for sex acts while he was county commissioner. As a result of his arrest, the offender resigned from his position. His identity and image were included in reports by local media outlets.
Sex Buyer Fired or Resigned Due to Arrest:
- https://www.clermontsun.com/2012/02/09/wilson-facing-prostitution-and-drug-trafficking-charges (2012)
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MII1tXCYy8Q (2012)
- https://www.wlwt.com/article/ex-commissioner-admits-to-partying-with-prostitutes (2012)
Background on Prostitution in the Area:
- https://www.clermontsun.com/russian-women-arrested-for-prostitution-in-union-township (2011)
- Police bust prostitution ring in Clermont County (2012)
- https://local12.com/news/local/alleged-prostitution-operation-busted-in-high-end-office-building-in-blue-ash (2019)
Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:
- https://www.wane.com/8-women-rescued-and-arrested-in-central-ohio-human-trafficking-single-day-sting (2012)
- https://www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Human-Trafficking-Commission-Annual-Reports/HTC-2017-Annual-Report_Web (2017)
- https://www.wlwt.com/21-rescued-in-kentucky-human-trafficking-sting-dozens-from-cincinnati-area-arrested (2021)
Local Prostitution-Related Violence, Drug Offenses: