Ocean Township is a community of about 26,000 residents, located in Monmouth County, New Jersey. It is situated near the Jersey Shore, just north of Asbury Park. Prostitution has been identified as a substantial local problem for years, and the local market appears to be centered indoors in storefront brothels (e.g., spas) and motels. For example, an investigation of alleged prostitution at the Ocean Spa on Route 35 resulted in the arrest of six people.
Among the tactics used to curtail the local commercial sex market and address resulting problems have been at least one effort to arrest the individuals driving the market: the buyers of sex. In January 2014, detectives observed “suspicious activity” at one of the rooms of the Tower Motel on Route 35. An investigation provided evidence that two men had arrived at the hotel to buy sex. The two men were arrested, as was a woman for “promoting prostitution.” The identities of those arrested were released to the media. This was not a case involving a typical reverse sting operation (i.e., featuring a police decoy), but was a proactive attempt to take advantage of an opportunity to arrest sex buyers during the course of a prostitution investigation.
A similar operation occurred seven years earlier, and resulted in the arrest of five sex buyers. In July 2007, members of the Ocean Township Police Detective Bureau and Special Assignment Unit made 11 arrests in connection with prostitution-related offenses at two separate massage parlor establishments located on Route 35. The arrests were the result of an ongoing investigation into the Ocean Day Spa, Route 35 north of Deal Road, and the Sea Day Spa, Route 35 and Herbert Avenue. All five men were charged with engaging in prostitution and were later released on criminal summonses.
- Ocean Township Police Department
- Shaming, john arrests:
- Background on local prostitution: