Lima, OH

Tactics Used

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

Lima is a city of approximately 38,000 residents, located in Western Ohio. Local residents and businesses have reported high levels of prostitution activity, often concentrated in the Kibbys Corner area, for over a decade. There is also evidence of local sex trafficking.  For example, in 2012 the skeletal remains of a 14-year-old runaway, who went missing in 1999, were found after the home where she was last seen was demolished.  The home in Lima was owned by a suspect who had killed himself in 2002 while in prison for the rape of a 12-year-old girl.  Police said the man had also been linked to human trafficking, and had been arrested in 2001 and charged with multiple counts of rape and child pornography involving local girls. A more recent example:  In January, 2021  a couple was indicted on 15 human trafficking-related counts by an Allen County grand jury for trafficking a young girl for prostitution since she was 12 years of age.

To address the issues of prostitution and sex trafficking, the Lima Police Department routinely conducts street-level reverse stings to identify and apprehend sex buyers. The sweeps have resulted in up to 70 prostitution-related arrests in the city in a single year. Once charged, johns may have their names and other identifying information released to the local media. Recent arrests have included a city pastor, local coach, and the mayor of Ottawa, Ohio.

Key Sources

State Ohio
Type City
Population 37936
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