Lansing, IL

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

Lansing is a city of less than 30,000 residents, located in eastern Illinois in Cook County, near Hammond, Indiana and south of Calumet City, Illinois. Cases of prostitution and child sex trafficking have been documented in the community. For example, in 2013, two men faced charges following an investigation into alleged child sex trafficking at a Lansing motel. One man was charged with two counts of human trafficking, one count of involuntary servitude, and one count of involuntary servitude of a minor. A tip reportedly led police to the motel, where they found two men with a 19-year-old woman and a 16-year-old girl. Police also found postings on advertising the two people for prostitution. Their investigation determined one of the men was a pimp who arranged the prostitution of the adult and trafficked the child over several months in hotels in the south suburbs and northwest Indiana.

In their efforts to reduce commercial sex activity locally, law enforcement have conducted reverse stings in Lansing targeting sex buyers. Lansing Police Department officers participated in the “National Day of John Arrests” operation occurring in late January and early February 2014. During the operation, the Cook County Sheriff’s Office and Lansing Police Department arrested six sex buyers and seized six vehicles. The men were charged with misdemeanor solicitation of prostitution; each was charged $1,000 in fines.

In early February 2016, CCSO and LPD officers announced the completion of another reverse sting in the community. The operation, conducted at a local hotel using a female undercover officer, was one of at least two anti-prostitution details staged in Cook County in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl– the other was staged in nearby Matteson. In the days following the operations, the Chicago Tribune interviewed the Matteson Police Chief who indicated that 20 sex buyers had been intercepted during the two stings, 13 of whom were picked up in Lansing. Their identities were not disclosed to the public, but the MPD officer reported that those arrested “face[d] a $500 fine, plus a $500 administration fee and towing fines if they used a vehicle in their attempt to buy sex.”

A May 2022 report confirmed the LPD still conducted regular web-based reverse stings at hotels in the city, each resulting in 14 arrests on average, most of whom were sex buyers. Sex buyers are charged at least $500 in the form of a municipal fee.

Key Partners

  • Cook County Sheriff’s Office
  • Lansing Police Department

Key Sources

Reverse Stings with Auto Seizure:

Web-Based Reverse Stings:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Illinois
Type City
Population 27614
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