Platte City, MO
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Platte City is a community of approximately 5,000 residents, located 25 miles north of Kansas City in Platte County, Missouri. Prostitution has been well documented in the city for years. For example, in March 2015, an undercover operation in the Platte City area netted five arrests on suspicions of prostitution. Platte City Police received information about a specific individual in Platte City reported to be engaging in illegal sex acts. The Platte County Sheriff’s Department received a similar tip, and the two agencies teamed up to conduct the operation. Undercover officers secured rooms at an unnamed local hotel and used social media and phone calls to make contact with parties advertising adult entertainment activities, including massages, body rubs and escort services. Four women responded to the requests and later, while at the hotel, agreed to perform sexual acts for money. After money was exchanged, each woman was arrested and booked before being released, pending charges. An unnamed male became the fifth person arrested. He accompanied one of the women to the hotel and was taken into custody on an outstanding warrant, and the individual was suspected of serving as a bodyguard or pimp.
Among the efforts to combat prostitution in the area, local police have used tactics targeting the consumer demand for commercial sex. For example, in July 2003, officers from the Platte City Police Department collaborated with 20 other state law enforcement agencies to conduct a reverse sting. Police placed a series of decoy listings advertising sex in local newspapers and on the internet. As sex buyers responded to the listings, undercover officers arranged to meet them at a nearby location. Once the men “agreed to exchange something of value for sex acts”, they were promptly arrested. Some of the men’s names were publicized by the local media.
Sex buyers have been arrested in the city through means other than sting operations; some occur while investigating other cases and responding to calls for service. For example, in January, 2022 a 23-year-old woman, who later claimed she was raped, was arrested and in February charged with one count of prostitution. The man who police say she met for sex was charged with patronizing prostitution. The charge against each is a misdemeanor. On January 6 police were called to a motel on NW Prairie View Road in Platte City, where a woman told officers she met with a man earlier in the day after conversing with him on the app “List Crawler.” According to court documents, the woman told police the man agreed to pay her 120 “roses” for her time, which stood for $120 dollars. According to court documents, the man rented a hotel room and the pair had transactional sex. The woman alleged to police that the sex buyer returned later that evening and raped her, which the sex buyer denied. Police charged both with prostitution, with parties admitting to it, while they investigated the rape allegation.
Loss of employment is another consequence of buying sex that has occurred within the county. For example, in 2013 the principal of Platte County High School resigned his position after being arrested in a Kansas City, Missouri, prostitution sting. The man was arrested after he allegedly responded to an online ad to meet up with a prostituted woman at a Northland motel. Kansas City Missouri police said that they placed the ad as part of a sting operation, and that the principal agreed to pay an undercover female detective posing as a prostituted person $150 for sex acts.
- “Police Charge 18 People in KC Prostitution Sting”, Southeast Missourian, July 5 2003.
- “Priest, Deputy Among 18 Charged in Prostitution Sting”, Lawrence Journal-World, July 5 2003.
- http://fox4kc.com/2012/10/04/platte-county-hs-principal-resigns-after-prostitution-sting-bust/ (2013)
Arrest of Sex Buyer; Disclosure of Identity:
Sex Buyer Fired or Resigned Due to Arrest:
- http://fox4kc.com/platte-county-hs-principal-resigns-after-prostitution-sting-bust/ (2013)
- http://www.kctv5.com/platte-county-high-school-principal-resigns-after-prostitution-bust (2013)
- https://www.kmbc.com/article/former-principal-arrested-in-prostitution-bust (2013)
Background on Local Prostitution and Sex Trafficking:
- http://www.plattecountycitizen.com/undercover operation nets 5 (2015)
- https://www.newspressnow.com/news/local_news/four-arrested-in-platte-county-prostitution-sting (2015)
- https://www.kmzu.com/prostitution-sting-resulted-in-arrests/ (2015)
- http://www.newspressnow.com/news/local_news/four-arrested-in-platte-county-prostitution-sting (2018)
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