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Hanahan is a city of approximately 18,000 residents, located just north of Charleston in Berkeley County, SC. Incidents of street prostitution, and cases of prostitution-related homicide, have been documented locally.
Local law enforcement have taken steps to commercial sex activity by targeting demand. In response to citizens’ complaints, for example, the Hanahan Police Department and Charleston County Sheriff’s Office conducted a daytime street-level reverse sting on April 22, 2006. The operation was quite large in scale, and involved two phases. First, law enforcement swept a thoroughfare known for street prostitution and arrested two prostituted women. The women were then “replaced” with three undercover female officers, who served as decoys. As men attempted to solicit sex from the officers, they were arrested. In just under six hours, 20 sex buyers were arrested. Each faced a penalty of up to 30 days in jail and a fine of $1,088. The arrestee names were not released to the public. When asked about the sting, police reported that it was the “largest operation of its kind in Hanahan in at least 10 years.”
In May 2016, a joint street-level reversal conducted by HPD officers and the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office netted 11 individuals for solicitation of prostitution and five other individuals on drug and warrants charges in Hanahan, Goose Creek and Ladson. The Charleston Post and Courier reported nine of the arrestees were picked up in Hanahan, but did not specify how many of those offenders were charged with solicitation. All of the arrestees’ names and mugshots were publicized in local media outlets.
- Street-Level Reverse Stings (with Shaming since at least 2016):
- “20 Men Arrested in Sting”, Charleston Post and Courier, April 24 2006.
- “Prostitution Sting Nets 22”, Charleston Post and Courier, April 24 2006.
- “Prostitution Sting Results in 22 Arrests”, Charleston Post and Courier, April 24 2006.
- “16 Arrested in Berkeley County for Solicitation of Prostitution, Other Charges,” NBC/WCBD-TV 2, May 16 2016.
- “16 Arrested in Undercover Berkeley Prostitution Sting,” Charleston Post and Courier, May 16 2016.
- Background on Prostitution in the Area:
- “Escort Operator Gets Jail,” Charleston Post and Courier, September 26 1995.
- “Group Forms to Combat Crime in Remount Area,” Charleston Post and Courier, May 16 2008.
- “Hanahan Studies Loitering Code,” Charleston Post and Courier, August 20 2008.
- Documented Violence against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:
- “Task Force Arrests Suspect in Strangulation,” Charleston Post and Courier, April 13 2009.
- “Strangulation Suspect Captured,” Charleston Post and Courier, April 14 2009.
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