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Lyon County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2020 census, the county population was approximately 32,000. The county seat and largest city is Emporia. Prostitution activity has been well-documented within the county, and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement agencies. Local prostitution cases have also involved other crimes (e.g., drug offenses) and child endangerment.
Consumer level demand provides the revenue stream for all prostitution and sex trafficking, and has therefore been targeted by local law enforcement agencies as a strategy for prevention and response. Demand reduction tactics used in the town include reverse stings, other sex buyer arrests, and the disclosure of sex buyer identities. For example, in 2011, one man and three women are in custody following a bust involving an alleged prostitution ring and another man fled after escaping Emporia Police officers. Two women and a 16 year old girl were arrested for prostitution. The arrested man was alleged to have paid for sexual acts with the women. Another man who escaped was believed to have gang ties in Wichita and police said he had a history of violence. Police also said the 16-year-old could have been a runaway and may have been forced into prostitution. An eyewitness called police to inform them of the situation.
In August, 2017, two men have been arrested during a prostitution sting southwest of Topeka in Lyon County. Lyon County sheriff’s officials and the Emporia Police Department narcotics unit conducted the sting. Through the course of the investigation, two individuals were identified and arrested for paid sex. Addition charges included possession of methamphetamine, possession of marijuana, possession of paraphernalia, child endangerment, and use of telecommunications in a drug transaction. The identities of the arrested men were publicly disclosed.
- Lyon County Sheriff’s Office
- Emporia Police Department
Sex Buyer Arrest, Identity Disclosure:
Web-Based Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:
Background on Local Prostitution, Related Crimes, Child Endangerment: