Rapides Parish, LA

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

Rapides Parish is located midway between Baton Rouge and Shreveport in central Louisiana. The Parish’s population is about 129,000, and its county seat and largest city is Alexandria. Prostitution and sex trafficking activity have been well-documented in the city of Alexandria, and in the surrounding communities and unincorporated areas of Rapides Parish. This activity and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates result in complaints to law enforcement agencies from residents and businesses. Among the more serious problems associated with commercial sex in the area is child sex trafficking.

To curtail prostitution in the area, the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office has collaborated with other agencies to conduct reverse stings. For example, in June 2014, the Central Louisiana Safe Streets Gang Task Force (with the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office as a participant) collaborated with the Alexandria Police Department and FBI to conduct a reverse sting. Officers arrested 17 sex buyers during the operation, and disclosed each of the men’s names, ages, hometowns, and mugshots to the public. In a news release, police would not disclose the location of the sting, to protect the integrity of future operations.

In September 2015, Louisiana State Police reported the arrest of a male sex buyer in Alexandria following a web-based anti-prostitution investigation. The man had reportedly posted online advertisements soliciting sex. Over the course of the investigation, the man allegedly “began asking for sex with an adult and a juvenile.” He also conveyed his interest in performing several “heinous sexual acts with the juvenile.” He was arrested and charged with “contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile, solicitation of prostitution, prostitution involving juveniles, and crimes against nature by solicitation.” Although the logistics of the sting were not disclosed, he was arrested and the offender’s identity was publicized in press.

Loss of employment is another consequence of buying sex that has occurred within the Parish. In June 2016, a deputy with the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office was arrested for numerous crimes associated with buying sex. The Louisiana State Police (LSP) Bureau of Investigations arrested the deputy on charges including malfeasance in office (6 counts), solicitation for prostitution (2 counts), inciting prostitution, obstruction of justice, and unlawful use of criminal records (2 counts). The LSP had received information regarding criminal activity involving the deputy, and with the assistance of Homeland Security Investigations and Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office, launched an investigation into those accusations. The investigation revealed that the suspect had an ongoing sexual relationship with a female engaged in prostitution. Investigators believed that the man was on-duty during the times that he was engaged in these criminal offenses. Based on information obtained from the investigation, investigators were able to secure an arrest warrant, and the suspect was arrested at the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office and booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center. News releases noted that the Louisiana State Police online reporting system was available to the public through a secure reporting form that is submitted to the appropriate investigators. Citizens can access the form by visiting www.lsp.org and clicking the Suspicious Activity link.  In May 2019, the former deputy pleaded guilty to one felony count of malfeasance in office as part of an arranged plea deal with the DA’s office at the Rapides Parish Courthouse. His sentence to serve three years of hard labor was suspended. He was instead sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay a $500 fine plus court costs.

Key Partners

  • Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office
  • Louisiana State Police
  • Rapides Parish Detention Center
  • Alexandria Police Department
  • Central Louisiana Safe Streets Gang Task Force
  • FBI

Key Sources

Reverse Sting, Identity Disclosure:

Web-Based Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Loss of Employment, Identity Disclosure:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Documented Violence Against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Louisiana
Type County
Population 128654
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