Macomb County is a county of approximately 841,000 residents, located north of Detroit in eastern Michigan. Local law enforcement have reported problems related to prostitution and sex trafficking in certain areas of the county, particularly Mount Clemens. At least one serial killer targeting prostituted women has operated in the county, murdering four young women whom he contacted through online escort advertisements in 2011. In one case, a couple was convicted in 2017 for forcing a mentally and physically disabled women to live in a shed in a trailer park and perform commercial sex. They were charged with prostitution and human trafficking.
In addition to conducting and/or assisting with city-level anti-prostitution efforts, the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office has also staged sting operations targeting sex buyers at undisclosed locations throughout the county. Specifically, the MCSO’s Macomb Area Computer Enforcement (MACE) team has conducted at least to reverse stings targeting johns attempting to purchase sex in exchange for illegal drugs.
The first operation, conducted in February 2014, resulted in the arrest of a former “reserve officer with the MCSO,” after the individual contacted an undercover officer online and solicited sex in exchange for Oxycodone. Following the investigation, the john’s name, age, and arrest photo were released to the public.
In April 2014, MACE officers conducted two additional stings, resulting in the arrest of four johns. Three men were arrested after arranging to meet an undercover officer online and exchange cocaine for sex. After intercepting the offenders, MACE officers searched their vehicle and “recovered powdered cocaine, crack cocaine and a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson handgun.” In a second investigation, a john was arrested after responding to an internet listing and agreeing to meet an undercover officer for commercial sex. When the man arrived at the location, he was promptly arrested. All arrestees’ names, ages and arrest photos were released to the public.
- Macomb County Sheriff’s Office
- Macomb Area Computer Enforcement Team
- Special Enforcement Team
Web-Based Reverse Sting and Shaming:
- “Ex-Sheriff’s Reserve Officer Charged in Sex-for-Drugs Case”, CBS/WWJ-TV 62, February 21 2014.
- “Macomb Township Man Faces Charge of Seeking Sex for Drugs”, Macomb Township Chronicle, February 25 2014.
- “4 Men Busted for Soliciting Sex from Undercover Officers Online”, CBS/WWJ-TV 62, April 9 2014.
- “Ex-Michigan Captain Leslie Rockymore Arrested in Drugs-for-Sex Scheme”, Detroit Free Press, April 9 2014.
- “Macomb Sheriff’s Unit Nabs Four Metro Detroiters in Online Sting”, Detroit Free Press, April 9 2014.
- “Undercover Officers Nab Four in M.A.C.E. Sting”, Macomb Township Chronicle, April 16 2014.
Background on Local Prostitution:
- https://patch.com/michigan/macomb-township-message-parlor-investigated-prostitution (2021)
- https://www.radio.com/wwjnewsradio/macomb-twp-massage-parlor-busted-for-alleged-prostitution (2021)
Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:
- “15 Macomb Residents Nabbed in National Child Prostitution Sweep”, Macomb Daily, July 29 2013.
- https://www.mlive.com/michigan-couple-sentenced-for-sex-trafficking-disabled-woman-from-shed.html (2019)
Documented Violence against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:
- “James Brown Is ‘Main Culprit’ Behind 4 Detroit Women Killed and Left in Cars, Police Say”, Huffington Post, May 5 2012.
- “Man Charged with Murders of Four Detroit Women Found in Car Trunks”, NBC News, November 26 2012.
- “James Brown, Michigan Man, Convicted of Killing 4 Women Met on Escort Service”, Huffington Post, February 28 2014.
- “Backpage Murderer Called Coward for Failing to Show Up for Sentencing”, Macomb Daily, April 15 2014.