Gillette is a city of approximately 31,000 residents located along Interstate 90 in northeast Wyoming, in Campbell County. Prostitution activity have been well-documented in the city and surrounding communities, and in unincorporated areas of Campbell County. This activity and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement agencies from residents and businesses. Among the problems associated with the local commercial sex market has been crimes committed against sex buyers. For example, in 2018, two Montana women were arrested on charges stemming from a prostitution investigation by local officers in Gillette. A 40-year-old male reported that he was approached by two women while at the bar at a restaurant, and agreed to have sex with the two women for $400. The three went to a room at a hotel, and the women stole the cash and left the room. They eventually returned to the room, but refused to give back the money and threatened to spray the older man with pepper spray. He then left the room and notified the police department.
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. At least one reverse sting has been conducted by the Gillette Police Department the city. In 2017, four men were arrested on suspicion of soliciting a prostitute during an 8-hour online sting operation. The names and ages of the men appeared in news releases.
In May, 2019 a 41-year-old Gillette man was arrested and charged with multiple felonies after soliciting women on dating sites to have sex with him in exchange for money. The man was a previously convicted sex offender, and had been cited for similar offenses in July and August of 2018, and was already on probation. According to an affidavit of probable cause, in August a female reported receiving a message on a dating website from a man offering her $3,500 to come to his residence and have sex with him. The investigation revealed that the profile picture from the various dating apps matched a previous booking photo, and reports were also received from other women during the course of the investigation. The detective in the case conducted a targeted sting, creating a fake female profile on a dating website and soon received a message from a similar username soliciting sex. Based on information gathered from the fake profile and the testimony of several other women, a warrant was obtained. The man was charged with four counts of attempted promotion of prostitution and one count of promoting obscenity for sending the detective a sexually explicit picture of a man’s penis. Each felony count is punishable by three years in prison, a $3,000 fine, or both.
- Gillette Police Department
Web-Based Reverse Sting, Shaming:
- http://www.gillettenewsrecord.com/news/local/article (2017)
- https://trib.com/news/local/three-face-charges-related-to-prostitution (2017)
- https://county17.com/2019/05/24/gillette-man-arrested-after-posting-on-multiple-dating-sites/ (2019)
Background on Local Prostitution and Related Crime:
- https://www.gillettenewsrecord.com/news/local (2012)
- https://county17.com/2017/07/14/gpd-cracks-down-on-prostitution/ (2017)
- https://county17.com/2018/09/10/report-of-prostitution-results-in-drug-arrests/ (2018)
- https://www.gillettenewsrecord.com/records/courts/article_d7014b9c-f97c-5e38-a454-f500261b15c8.html (2019)