Medina County, OH

Tactics Used

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

Medina County, Ohio, has a population of about 172,ooo, and its county seat is Medina. Prostitution and sex trafficking activity have been well-documented throughout the county, and in the region.  For example, between 2017 and 2019, state and federal agencies assited local law enforcement agencies in an investigations in numerous cities and counties in Northeast Ohio for alleged commercial sex crimes. The raids were part of a collaborative investigation between the Ohio Investigative Unit, the U.S. Secret Service, and local law enforcement agencies. The investigation started in 2017 when agents were tipped off about possible illegal activity.  In addition to Medina County, 15 other search warrants were executed in Avon, Broadview Heights, Brunswick, Cleveland, Columbia Station, Copley, Kent, Lorain, Mansfield, North Royalton, Perkins Township, Strongsville, and Wooster.  In some communities, search warrants were executed at multiple locations. Grand juries in Cuyahoga and Medina Counties indicted seven people for promoting prostitution in connection to the stings.  Such activity and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement agencies from residents and businesses. Among the more serious crimes associated with the local commercial sex market are sex trafficking, child endangerment, and violence committed against people involved in these transactions.

Consumer-level demand provides the revenue stream for all prostitution and sex trafficking, and has therefore been targeted by local law enforcement agencies in their strategy for prevention and response. For example, in July, 2019, two successful human trafficking stings during the MLB All-Star weekend produced multiple arrests, including several men from Medina County who faced felony charges in connection with attempts to solicit sex from minors. “Operation Triple Play” resulted in the arrest of 28 men from across Ohio.  The four-day undercover operation led by the Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force was intended to identify and arrest individuals interested in engaging in sexual activity with persons they believed to be minor children.  The men — as young as 20 and as old as 67 — each engaged in sexually explicit online conversations with undercover task force officers posing as children.  Contact was made through popular social media sites and the defendants expressed an interest having sex or sending sexually explicit photos during the online conversations. When a plan was made to meet at a vacant house, police apprehended the men.

Key Partners

  • Medina County Sheriff’s Office
  • Medina Police Department
  • Mahoning Valley Human Trafficking Task Force
  • Central Ohio Human Trafficking Task Force
  • Attorney General’s Ohio Organized Crime Investigations Commission

 

 

Key Sources

Web-Based Reverse Sting, Shaming:

Background on Sex Trafficking and Prostitution in the Area:

Documented Homicide and other Violence Committed Against Trafficking Children and Adults:

State Ohio
Type County
Population 172332
Location
Comments are closed.