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Lehighton is a borough of approximately 5,300 residents in east central Pennsylvania, located in Carbon County, PA. It is situated about 77 miles north of Philadelphia and 54 miles south of Scranton. Although prostitution and sex trafficking are not significant issues in the community, commercial sex activity has been reported to occur. This activity and its ancillary crimes has resulted in complaints to local law enforcement by residents and businesses. Robbery and drug distribution/possession have also been documented to occur during commercial sex transactions in the borough.
Loss of employment and identity disclosure are consequences of purchasing sex that have occurred within the city. For example, in June 1988, an associate pastor pleaded guilty to soliciting a prostituted person and resigned from Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Lehighton. The man entered his plea to the summary offence and paid a $300 fine plus court costs. He had been arrested in Wilkes Barre, PA after he allegedly attempted to solicit sex from an undercover police officer posing as a prostitution woman in exchange for $30. The Trinity Church council met three days after the pastor’s arrest to discuss the case, and ultimately accepted his resignation.
Loss of Employment, Identity Disclosure:
Background on Local Prostitution and Sex Trafficking:
- Innocent pleas entered in Carbon County Court (1985)
- https://www.lehighvalleylive.com/allentown/2013/09/platinum_plus_dancers_offered.html (2013)
- https://www.wfmz.com/news/insideyourtown/10-men-6-women-arrested-in-prostitution-sting-in-northampton-county/article (2013)
- https://www.republicanherald.com/news/prostitution-case-against-former-constable-heading-to-carbon-county-court/article (2017)
- https://www.lehighvalleylive.com/news/2018/03/ex-constable_who_traded_money.html (2018)
- https://www.pahomepage.com/video/woman-survives-sex-trafficking/ (2022)