Dorchester County, Maryland, has a population of about 33,000. It is located on the Atlantic coast of Maryland, and its county seat is the city of Cambridge (population approximately 12,000). Prostitution and sex trafficking activity have been well-documented in the county and throughout the region. This activity and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement. 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. To identify and apprehend local sex buyers driving the prostitution and sex trafficking markets, the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office has collaborated with local police (primarily, the Cambridge Police Department) to conduct reverse stings. Citizen and business complaints to police encourage police operations, and in 2008-2011 approximately three street-level reverse stings were conducted per year. The Cambridge Police Department began conducting these operations in 1990, according to the National Assessment survey completed by a supervisor. More recent operations have included a case in September, 2018 in which a man was arrested during an investigation into the sexual solicitation of a minor. According to the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, the man was charged with prostitution involving a person under 16, sex act with a 14-year-old, fourth-degree sex offense intercourse with a 14-year-old, second-degree assault and reckless endangerment. The sex buyer’s identity was included in news releases.
- Cambridge Police Department
- Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office
Reverse Stings, Shaming:
- WMDT.com, 9/27/2007. Prostitution bust on mid-shore.
- http://www.wboc.com/cambridge-man-charged-with-sexual-solicitation-of-minor (2018)
Background on Local Sex Trafficking and Prostitution:
- https://www.myeasternshoremd.com/cambridge-woman-charged-with-soliciting-prostitution (2011)
- https://www.stardem.com/news/woman-arrested-for-prostitution/ (2011)
- https://www.washingtontimes.com/city-councilman-4-others-arrested-in-prostitution-/ (2017)
- https://dcw50.com/2017/12/20/citizen-complaints-result-in-arrests-for-prostitution-soliciation/ (2017)
- https://www.delmarvanow.com/prostitution-sting-delmar-hotel (2017)
- http://www.wboc.com/story/37105373/maryland-state-police-arrest-five-people-in-prostitution-sting (2017)
- https://www.delmarvanow.com/police-crisfield-city-councilman-arrested-prostitution-solicitation (2017)