Henrico, VA

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

Henrico is the name used by local law enforcement and the U.S. Postal Service for several distinct areas in unincorporated parts of Henrico County, Virginia, near the city of Richmond. Cases of prostitution and sex trafficking have occurred in this unincorporated community, and have generated complaints to local officials. Stings have been conducted to curb the spread of this problem because it directly impacts the quality of life in the county.  In 2009, local law enforcement began investigating prostitution facilitated through the internet, and at times Henrico Police have conducted stings at least once per month, and each month made approximately five arrests. In 2015, new laws took effect in Virginia that feature more severe consequences for those who profit from prostitution and sex trafficking, and rehabilitation for the women and girls whose abuse generates the revenue. The legislation was effective July 1, and increased sentences to penitentiary time, dramatically increased prison time in cases where a juvenile was involved, incorporated the use of multi-jurisdictional grand juries, and added as a crime the recruitment of people into the sex trade.

Attempts to curb prostitution in the area include reverse stings. For example, in October 2011 the Henrico Police Vice Unit conducted a prostitution sting along the Glenside Drive and West Broad Street corridor as a part of the ‘Operation 360 – An All Points Crime Initiative.’ Because those individuals arrested for soliciting prostituted persons were released on a summons at the time, their photograph and arrest information was not released. However, those that appeared in court had their identities released. In 2014, Henrico Police conducted a street-level reverse sting along the West Broad Street corridor. Police did not release mug shots, but they said the arrests were made at hotels along West Broad Street and Gaskins Road. During the afternoon hours, detectives had contact with several males at hotels in the area of W. Broad Street and Gaskins Road, as well as Gaskins Road and Mayland Drive. Five men were arrested for prostitution. In 2016 another reverse sting was conducted in Henrico’s West End, as part of a bigger crime sweep resulting in more than 100 people being arrested. The reverse sting happened near the business areas of Glenside and West Broad Street. The other operations happened along Staples Mill and Wistar Road in the West End. There were nine men arrested for buying sex.

Key Partners

  • Henrico County Police Division

Key Sources

 Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Background on Local Sex Trafficking, Prostitution, Related Crimes:

State Virginia
Type City
Population 7565
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