Lubbock County, TX

Tactics Used

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

Lubbock County is located between Amarillo and Midland in northwest Texas., and has a population of about 310,000 – most of which live in the city of Lubbock (pop. 254,000).  Prostitution and sex trafficking activity have been documented in the city of Lubbock and in other areas of Lubbock County.  For example, in August 2013, five people were arrested for compelling prostitution and human trafficking. Lubbock Police conducted an online prostitution sting at a local hotel, and during the arrest officers discovered a juvenile female was being used as a prostitute. Another sting was conducted and more arrests were made, and another juvenile female was recovered.  The five arrested all face charges of compelling prostitution, human trafficking, and aggravated promotion of prostitution.  Other cases of sex trafficking have also been reported in Lubbock between 2007 and 2012.  A serial killer of prostituted women was also active in the city in the mid-2000s.

To combat consumer demand for commercial sex, the Lubbock Police Department conducts both street-level and web-based reverse stings. Officers also routinely publicize the names and identities of arrested sex buyers.  In 2012, the Lubbock Police Department launched a concerted “shaming” effort by posting the names and photos of arrested johns on the LPD’s official website. LPD officers also posted a group photo of the eight johns arrested to the LPD’s Facebook page.  As prostitution is a Class B Misdemeanor in Texas, arrestees in Lubbock face up to a 180-day jail sentence, and fines up to $2,000.

The Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office often collaborates with other law enforcement agencies on prostitution and sex trafficking operaitons.  Lubbock Police Department’s Special Operations Division with the assistance of LPD Patrol, Texas Tech Police Department, Homeland Security Investigations and Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission conducted a two-day prostitution operation, Jan. 21-22, targeting human trafficking and prostitution.  The operation resulted in 17 arrests for prostitution, soliciting prostitution and other offenses.

Key Partners

  • Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office
  • Lubbock Police Department
  • Voice of Hope Lubbock Rape Crisis Center’s Ending Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking Project
  • Texas Tech Police Department
  • Homeland Security Investigations
  • Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission

Key Sources

Reverse Stings and Shaming:

Web Stings:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

Documented Violence against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

State Texas
Type County
Population 310569
Location
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