Hammond, IN

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

Hammond is a suburb of Chicago located on the northwestern edge of Indiana, with a population of about 77,000 residents. Many problems associated with the local commercial sex market have been documented in the city, including international prostitution and sex trafficking rings involving minors. It has also served as the operating base for at least two serial killers who specifically targeted prostituted women.

In response, the Hammond Police Department has adopted several tactics to reduce underlying demand driving the local prostitution market. Officers have routinely conducted street-level reverse stings using female undercover officers as decoys.  Since at least 1995, sex buyers arrested in the community have frequently had their identities released to the media, and could also have their cars impounded (if the vehicle was used for the purposes of solicitation) and be subject to a $105 retrieval fee. Once arrested, sex buyers may also be held on bond on a charge of “patronizing a prostitute,” which is $500 for Indiana residents and $1,000 for those who live out-of-state.

The HPD has partnered with officers from the neighboring Calumet City Police Department for some operations. Law enforcement and residents have reported problems with chronic street prostitution along State Street– a thoroughfare that extends into both communities. For this reason, the departments often coordinate when conducting sting operations. For example, in September 2018, Hammond and Calumet City police partnered on a reverse sting after receiving multiple complaints about prostitution in the area. Four men were arrested in less than two hours on September 12 during the operation along State Line Avenue. The identities of the men were included in press releases, and each was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of patronizing a prostitute, police said. A female police officer posed as a prostituted person for the street-level sting. Police planned to continue to work to prevent prostitution in the area and to release the names of those arrested, according to a news release.

Key Partners

  • Hammond Police Department
  • Calumet City Police Department

Key Sources

Street-Level Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Auto Seizure:

Documented Violence Against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Indiana
Type City
Population 76984
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