Decatur, AL

Tactics Used

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

Decatur is a city with around 55,000 residents, situated near HuntsvilleAthens and Madison in northern Alabama. Cases of prostitution and sex trafficking have been reported in the community, and residents have complained to local law enforcement about prostitution activity in some city neighborhoods.

In response, the Decatur Police Department has conducted at least one reverse sting targeting sex buyers. In April 2007, the DPD’s Organized Crime Unit placed a female undercover officer along city streets in an area known for prostitution. Five johns were arrested as a result; an additional man was arrested after attempting to recruit the decoy to “work” for him. All of the men’s names and other identifying information were publicized by local media outlets. When asked about the operation, a representative with the DPD noted that “complaints received during recent City Council district meetings [had] led to the undercover operation.”


Key Partners

  • Decatur Police Department

Key Sources

State Alabama
Type City
Population 55816
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