|IT Based Tactics||✓|
Middle Smithfield Township is a township of roughly 16,000 residents in eastern Pennsylvania, located in Monroe County, PA. Prostitution and sex trafficking activity has been well-documented in the city and greater county area. This activity and its ancillary crimes has resulted in complaints to local law enforcement by residents and businesses. Reports of targeted violence and sexual assault of prostituted persons occurring during commercial sex transactions in the township have also been documented. Among the more serious crimes associated with the local commercial sex market is child sex trafficking.
In effort to reduce commercial sex activity in the area, web-based reverse sting operations have been conducted in the township. For example, in August 2020, a man was arrested at a Monroe County hotel after contacting an undercover police officer in an attempt to solicit prostitution. The undercover officer had posted a fictitious online advertisement through which the suspect made arrangements to pay $200 for an hour of unprotected sex. Surveillance was set up at the Days Inn Hotel in Middle Smithfield Township before the suspect arrived and was arrested. He was charged with two misdemeanor charges of patronizing a prostitute. The name and mugshot of the arrested sex buyer were also shared online.
Web-Based Reverse Sting, Identity Disclosure:
- https://www.pahomepage.com/top-news/police-dallas-man-arrested-for-soliciting-prostitution-in-monroe-county/ (2020)
- https://www.pahomepage.com/police-dallas-man-arrested-for-soliciting-prostitution-in-monroe-county/ (2020)
- https://www.poconorecord.com/2020/wilkes-barre-area-man-nabbed-undercover-prostitution-sting-poconos (2020)
Background on Local Prostitution:
- “Stroudsburg Denies Permit to Spa Owner Charged in Prostitution,” Allentown Morning Call, May 6 1993.
- “Five Individuals Indicted for Operating a Multi-State Prostitution Network,” Press Release, U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, May 17 2011.
- “Fourth Defendant Sentenced in Stroudsburg Prostitution Roundup,” Pocono Record, October 7 2015.
- https://cseinstitute.org/Report on Commercial Sexual Exploitation in Pennsylvania (2018)
- https://www.poconorecord.com/news/kunkletown-man-charged-with-promoting-prostitution (2019)
- https://www.thewestendreporter.com/kunkletown-man-facing-felony-charges-for-promoting-prostitution-stalking-and-related-charges/ (2019)
Background on Local Sex Trafficking:
- “Two Charged in Stroudsburg Trafficking, Prostitution,” Pocono Record, October 6 2015.
- “Human Trafficking Probe Launched after Chinese Woman Found in Poconos Massage Parlor,” Allentown Morning Call, October 26 2015.
- “Monroe County Man Pleads Guilty to Heroin, Sex Trafficking Charges,” Pocono News, November 25 2015.
- https://www.wnep.com/monroe-county/hotel-manager-sentenced-to-15-years-for-sex-trafficking (2022)