Kalamazoo, MI

Tactics Used

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

Kalamazoo is a city of approximately 73,000 residents, located in southwestern Michigan. Like their neighbors in nearby Battle Creek, Kalamazoo residents have reported an increase in commercial sex sales in recent years. A number of serious crimes and other problems are associated with the local commercial sex market.  For example, child sex trafficking has been documented in the city, as have cases of prostituted women being murdered.

Among their efforts to address such issues, the Kalamazoo Police Department has conducted street-level reverse stings since at least 2007. During one such operation in 2007, six sex buyers were arrested during a two-day investigation that also resulted in the seizure of two of the johns’ vehicles.  The KPD reports that they frequently respond to and are informed by residents’ tips and complaints of prostitution activity. To facilitate collaboration with residents, the city has set up a phone line dedicated to reporting criminal activity, such as sex trafficking.

Key Partners

Key Sources

State Michigan
Type City
Population 72637
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