Coffee County, TN

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

Coffee County is located in south-central Tennessee and has about 59,000 residents. Prostitution activity has been well-documented within the county, and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement agencies from residents and businesses. Among the more serious crimes associated with the local commercial sex market is sex trafficking.

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. The Coffee County Sheriff’s Office has used both undercover female officers and police informants to apprehend sex buyers soliciting prostituted women since at least 1995, and have done so using web-based reversals since 2008. They have also conducted reverse stings using CB radios since 1995. More recently, a February 2009 sting by the CCSO netted the arrest of a deputy from nearby Putnam County. The sex buyer was arrested after arranging to meet an undercover female officer at a motel in the community of Manchester. According to reports, the exchange was videotaped by law enforcement. As is county policy, the man’s name and other information was released to the public. An online neighborhood watch program is in place for citizens to report if they see men repeatedly in the same areas or find suspicious communication on the internet. They offer a community service program to some of the sex buyers, but it is used rarely for those who are arrested without priors – and most sex buyers fall into that category.

Key Partners

  • Coffee County Sheriff’s Office
  • Putnam County Sheriff’s Office

Key Sources

National Assessment Survey and Interview

Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure, Cameras:

State Tennessee
Type County
Population 59032
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