Painesville, OH

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

Painesville is a community of approximately 21,000 residents, situated along Lake Erie east of Cleveland near Willoughby in Lake County, Ohio. Prostitution is a problem that the Painesville Police Department has focused on as a “quality of life” issue that they do not want to see become more widespread. At least one case of attempted child sex trafficking has also been documented in the community; in September 2013, PPD officers arrested a 64-year-old man for allegedly trying to solicit sex for money from a child.

In their efforts to reduce prostitution, Painesville police have conducted stings targeting sex buyers since at least 2001. In one instance, men arrested for attempting to buy sex have accepted an odd form of diversion, agreeing to stand in front of the courthouse wearing a chicken suit in exchange for having their cases dismissed. In 2007, a Painesville Municipal Court Judge made three offenders carry a sign (while wearing chicken suits) that stated, “There is no chicken ranch in Painesville,” in reference to the famous Texas brothel. While sex buyers have not had their names posted in news outlets, one could argue that the chicken suit experience constituted identity disclosure.

Key Partners

  • Painesville Police Department

Key Sources

Street-Level Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Ohio
Type City
Population 20591
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