St. Clair County, AL

Tactics Used

Reverse stings
Shaming
Auto seizure
Community service
Public education
Neighborhood action
SOAP orders
John school
Letters
Cameras
Web stings
License suspension

St. Clair County is located in the metropolitan area of Birmingham, Alabama. Prostitution activity has been well-documented within the county. This activity and the problems and ancillary crimes it generates results in complaints to law enforcement agencies from residents and businesses. Among the more serious crimes associated with the local commercial sex market are sex trafficking, child endangerment, and violence committed against people involved in these transactions.  For example,

Consumer-level demand provides the revenue stream for all prostitution and sex trafficking, and has therefore been targeted by local law enforcement agencies in their strategy for prevention and response. To combat the array of problems stemming from commercial sex, local law enforcement agencies have conducted reverse sting.  For example, in May, 2017, Alabama Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force conducted Operation Standing Guard in Jefferson, Shelby, and St. Clair counties.  That three-day operation resulted in six warrants being served, five individuals being arrested, and four child victims being identified. The operations target individuals who communicate online with minors and travel to meet them for the purpose of having sex, individuals who are willing to exploit minors by purchasing sex with them and individuals who produce, possess and/or distribute child pornography.

In November, 2017, St. Clair County law enforcement agencies participated in a five-day operation aimed at child predators. ALEA’s Alabama Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force announced charges against two men arrested during Operation Standing Guard II, which occurred in the Birmingham area. During the initiative, ICAC seized 100 electronic devices, carried out eight search warrants, identified 22 children that were being sexually exploited through social media, and initiated two sexual assault cases. In addition, Alabama ICAC Task Force collaborated with the Georgia ICAC Task Force to conduct Operation Hidden Guardian.  The Georgia ICAC Task Force arrested 21 suspects, with seven cases involving Alabama citizens who traveled to Columbus, Ga., with the expectation of having sex with a child.

 

Key Partners

  • St. Clair County Sheriff’s Office
  • ALEA’s SVU and Tactical Unit
  • ALEA’s Alabama Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force
  • Alabama’s Attorney General’s Office
  • FBI
  • Homeland Security Investigations
  • Walker County Sheriff’s Office
  • Birmingham Police Department
  • Bessemer Police Department
  • Homewood Police Department
  • Moody Police Department
  • Pelham Police Department
  • Gardendale Police Department
  • Tallapoosa County Sheriff’s Office
  • University of Alabama Police Department’s Joint Electronic Crimes Task Force
State Alabama
Type County
Population 88199
Location
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