Perrysburg, 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

Perrysburg is a city of approximately 25,000 residents, located south of Toledo in Wood County, Ohio. Situated along Interstate-75, the city has struggled with prostitution and sex trafficking activity in and around local truck stops and motels for decades. For example, in March 2014 a 16-year-old girl was rescued from a Perrysburg hotel in a human trafficking investigation. The trafficked girl was returned to her family, three people were arrested for solicitation of prostitution, and three others were arrested for promoting prostitution. In April 2016, a Perrysburg man who had previously pleaded guilty to attempted human trafficking of a minor for commercial sexual activity was charged with another 25 charges related to child sexual abuse materials (i.e., child pornography). He allegedly asked a woman in prostitution to arrange a meeting with a 12-year-old girl so he could drug and sexually assault her, but the woman instead contacted the police and the man was arrested when he arrived at the hotel. Further investigation and the discovery of illegal images on his confiscated computer led to the child pornography charges.

Much like neighboring Perrysburg Township, the city of Perrysburg has served as the staging ground for at least two prostitution stings resulting in the arrest of multiple sex buyers. In April 2012, the Wood County Sheriff’s Office conducted an undercover investigation into prostitution at a local hotel that resulted in the arrest of two prostituted women and seven men on charges of solicitation. It is unclear if the operation employed traditional reverse sting tactics (i.e., an undercover female officer or informant posing as a decoy), but is likely the WCSO consciously targeted sex buyers during the operation. The names, hometowns, and mugshots of all of the arrestees were publicized in local media outlets.

In early December 2013, the WCSO reported that it had conducted a “human-trafficking sting,” in conjunction with the Perrysburg Police Department and State of Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation, at an undisclosed hotel in Perrysburg off Fremont Pike. Six men were arrested over the course of the operation; four were charged with solicitation of a prostitute (a third-degree misdemeanor in the state of Ohio), one was charged with attempted solicitation (a fourth-degree misdemeanor), and one was charged with promoting prostitution (a fourth-degree felony). All of the offenders’ names, hometowns, and arrest photos were distributed to the public. Notably, the WCSO did not arrest two women present at the hotel during the sting, as “officials believed they were there against their will.”

In October 2019, a sting in Perrysburg led to the arrest of 11 women on prostitution charges and two men on solicitation charges. The operation was conducted by the Perrysburg Police Division in collaboration with the Wood County Sheriff’s Office, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Toledo Police Department, and the FBI in Perrysburg. The names and hometowns of the arrested sex buyers were released to the press.

Key Partners

  • Wood County Sheriff’s Office
  • Perrysburg Police Department
  • State of Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation

Key Sources

Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Ohio
Type City
Population 25114
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