Coeur d’Alene is a city of approximately 45,000 residents, located roughly 30 miles east of Spokane, Washington in Kootenai County in northwest Idaho. Sporadic cases of prostitution have been reported in the community for at least 25 years.
In January 2015, the Coeur d’Alene Police Department conducted an ad hoc reverse sting that produced the arrest of one john. After receiving a report from the FBI that officers with the Spokane Police Department had discovered a posting to Craigslist’s “casual encounters” section that posed a “proposition” of sex for money to North Idaho College students, CAPD officers launched an investigation. Working with NIC administrative officials, Coeur d’Alene police “set up a fake [NIC] student account and set up an email address. An officer began emailing the poster of the ad, pretending to be a female student.” During their exchanges, the man “awarded $587 of NIC grant money into the fake student’s account, with the understanding he would go to her apartment to have sex with her.” Police then arranged to meet the john at a Coeur d’Alene apartment complex, and arrested him when he arrived. In the days following his arrest, the john was fired from his position, and charged with five felonies, including attempting to procure a prostitute, attempting to misuse public money and bribery. His identity was also publicized by several media outlets.
- Coeur d’Alene Police Department
- Spokane Police Department
- North Idaho College
- Web-Based Reverse Sting with Shaming:
- “Former NIC Admin Facing Felonies for Indecent Craigslist Proposal,” ABC/KXLY-TV 4, February 18 2015.
- “Police: North Idaho College Official Offered Scholarships for Sex,” ABC/KIFI-TV 8, February 19 2015.
- “Sex for Grants Plot Alleged; Police: NIC Director of Financial Aid Faces Five Felony Charges,” Coeur d’Alene Press, February 19 2015.
- “Former NIC Administrator Asks for Lower Bail,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, February 26 2015.
- Background on Prostitution in the Area:
- “Police Suspect Valley Couple of Leading Prostitution Ring,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, October 12 1990.
- “Court Charges Spokane Man with Trying to Hire Prostitutes,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, October 16 1990.
- “Undercover Agent Interviewed by Pair in Prostitution-Ring Case,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, October 16 1990.
- “Formal Charges Filed in Escort Service Case,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, January 17 1991.
- “Prostitution Guilt Admitted,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, February 21 1991.
- “Escort Service Operator Faces Laundering Charges; She Allegedly Used Casino to Hide Prostitution Profits,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, February 3 2007.
- “Plea Deal Made in Prostitution Ring; Woman Accused of Laundering Money at Casino,” Spokane Spokesman-Review, July 28 2007.
- “Nine Arrested in Prostitution Sting at Idaho Casino,” CBS/KREM-TV 2, May 6 2015.