Southaven, MS

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

Southaven is a city of approximately 55,000 residents, situated in the southern suburbs of Memphis in DeSoto County, Mississippi. Prostitution has been identified by police and others as generating a wide range of problems in the area, including male sex buyers responding to online ads being shot and robbed. Consumer level demand provides the revenue stream for all prostitution and sex trafficking, and has therefore been targeted by local law enforcement agencies as a strategy for prevention and response. The Southaven Police Department has conducted web-based reverse stings using undercover officers. Arrested sex buyers have also had their identities reported in the media and often face fines. Loss of employment is another consequence of buying sex that has occurred within the city. In November, 2017, a member of the Southaven Board of Alderman was arrested by the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office and booked into the county jail on charges related to procuring prostitution. He had communicated with a woman and promised her money in exchange for sex. A search warrant based on that charge led to the man also being charged with transporting child pornography. In December, 2017, the alderman from Southaven resigned was arrested and charged with procuring a prostituted person. The offender quit his post shortly after pleading not guilty in federal court in Oxford. An indictment charged the 57-year-old man with bringing computer files with “visual depictions of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct” (child sexual abuse materials, or CSAM) across state lines from Tennessee into Mississippi in Nov. 2017.

Key Partners

Key Sources

Web-Based Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Sex Buyer Arrest, Identity Disclosure:

Sex Buyer Employment Loss:

Background on Sex Trafficking and Prostitution in the Area:

Documented Violence Against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

State Mississippi
Type City
Population 55429
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