Gordon Heights, NY

Tactics Used

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

Gordon Heights is an area in Suffolk County on Long Island, New York. In 1991, news outlets reported that a Gordon Heights Community Watch group started writing letters to the wives and mothers of those arrested for soliciting prostituted women.  In 1993, reports indicated that prostitution had “invaded” residential streets and schoolyards, and members of a neighborhood watch group began patrolling their streets with video cameras as part of community policing program.  In this Long Island city, two family members in Gordon Heights said they had been videotaping prostituted women and their customers for two and half years, using the taping to scare sex buyers out of the neighborhood.  The videotaping by community volunteers was done with the approval and guidance of police.  Twelve volunteers patrolled the neighborhood in teams of two, and were required to call police before going out to videotape, so cruisers could be in the area. The volunteers were mostly parents of school-age children. As they patrolled, one volunteer wrote down license plate numbers and car descriptions while the other taped situations appearing to be prostitution transactions. The teams were instructed by police to leave the area after witnessing these situations to avoid confrontations.

Key Partners

  • Gordon Heights Community Watch

Key Sources

State New York
Type City
Population 3285
Location
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