Meriden, CT

Tactics Used

Auto Seizure
Buyer Arrests
Community Service
Employment Loss
Identity Disclosure
IT Based Tactics
John School
License Suspension
Neighborhood Action
Public Education
Reverse Stings
SOAP Orders
Web Stings

Meriden is a city in New Haven County, Connecticut, with a population of approximately 61,000. As in the neighboring communities of Berlin, Southington, and New Britain, the city has reported problems with street- and business-based prostitution for many years, with activities frequently concentrated along the Berlin Turnpike. Cases of the forced prostitution of minors have also been documented.

In an effort to reduce demand for prostitution, Meriden Police have conducted reverse stings since 1992. That year, MPD officers arrested 20 sex buyers in the city in a street-level reverse sting. At the time, the Boston Globe reported that officers “decided to target patrons because seven previous stings [targeting prostituted women] had failed to stop the sex trade in the area.” Each arrestee was charged with the misdemeanor of “patronizing a prostitute.” The sex buyer identities were not disclosed to the public. Over three days in 2006, 26 sex buyers were arrested after they solicited an undercover MPD officer posing as a prostituted woman. The latter operation was conducted following complaints from local business owners and residents in the East Main Street area. The names and other identifying information about the offenders were disclosed to the public. Meriden Police have also supported officers in nearby Berlin with at least two reverse stings in their city. The operations were conducted in September 2007 and October 2011, respectively.

In 2018, a man was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for the sex trafficking of three teenage females aged 14, 15, and 16. According to the Department of Justice’s press release, “[Name] used the website Backpage to advertise the minor victims’ services and transported the girls to various Connecticut hotels, including hotels in Meriden, Milford, and Hamden, where they worked in prostitution for [name].” More recently, in September 2020, Meriden police arrested a 46-year-old man for the commercial sex abuse of a minor, prostitution of a minor, and human trafficking. The police revealed that the man “used a dating/escort service website to promote the sexual abuse of a minor and also utilized social media apps to entice minors.” The police used surveillance efforts that led to the man’s arrest, and his identity was publicly disclosed.

Key Partners

Key Sources

Street-Level Reverse Stings:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Connecticut
Type City
Population 60850
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