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Stratford is a town of approximately 52,000 residents, located in southern coastal Connecticut’s Fairfield County. As in the neighboring communities of Bridgeport and Milford, prostitution activity has been reported in the town for several years. It has also been linked to an array of violent crimes, including sex trafficking of minors, robberies and assaults on attempted sex buyers, and targeted homicides of women engaged in prostitution.
On at least three occasions, local law enforcement have incorporated the use of tactics to address underlying demand for prostitution. In February 2014, an investigation into alleged prostitution at a local hotel resulted in the arrest of three sex buyers. Although the Stratford Police Department officers did not disclose details about the sting, they did release the names, ages, dates of birth, and arrest photos of each of the three sex buyers to local media outlets. The Connecticut Post reported that the offenders were intercepted after “attempting to solicit sexual favors for money.”
In June 2016, twelve men were arrested during a reverse sting operation at a hotel in Stratford. The reverse sting was a joint effort by the Stratford Police Narcotics Vice and Intelligence Unit and Bridgeport Police Tactical Narcotics Team. The operation was conducted over two days at a hotel located on South Avenue in Stratford. The operation was the result of complaints received concerning prostitution and human trafficking at area hotels.
In late October 2017, Stratford Police arrested six people, including four alleged sex buyers, after detectives placed online ads on Backpage, Cityvibe and Craigslist. Undercover officers eventually met up with the suspects at hotels, after which the sex buyers were arrested.
- Stratford Police Department
- Narcotics Vice and Intelligence Unit
- Bridgeport Police Tactical Narcotics Team
Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:
- “Three Men Charged with Patronizing a Prostitute,” Connecticut Post, February 10 2014.
- “Johns Busted,” Stratford Star, February 20 2014.
- https://patch.com/connecticut/westhaven/west-haven-man-arrested-prostitution-sting-operation-stratford (2016)
- https://patch.com/connecticut/fairfield/s/g9sr8/6-charged-in-undercover-prostitution-sting-stratford-police (2017)
Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:
- “Girl, 12, Part of Connecticut-New York Prostitution Ring,” Waterbury Republican-American, March 17 2007.
- “Sex Slave,” Meriden Record-Journal, March 17 2007.
- “Leader of New York-Connecticut Sex Trafficking Ring Pleads Guilty,” Press Release, U.S. Department of Justice, March 14 2008.
- “Sex Ring to Net Long Prison Term,” Stratford Star, March 20 2008.
- “Bridgeport Man Charged in Human Trafficking Investigation,” Connecticut Post, June 29 2015.
- “Man Sentenced for Sex Trafficking of Minors at Milford and Stratford Hotels,” Milford Mirror, February 12 2016.
- “Minors Manipulated into Prostitution in Stratford: Feds; A Man Was Sent to Prison for 10 Years for Coercing Five Minors into Prostitution after Promising Them a Lucrative Modeling Career,” Stratford Patch, February 12 2016.
Background on Prostitution in the Area:
- “Prostitution Charges Lodged against Woman,” New Haven Register, October 2 1998.
- “Cops Shut down Massage Parlor, Charge Masseuse,” Connecticut Post, March 1 2002.
- “Residents Cite Problems at Motels,” Connecticut Post, September 29 2006.
- “Stratford Cops Arrest 3 in Massage Parlor Raid,” Connecticut Post, March 23 2007.
- “Working the Kinks Out, A New State Law Cracks down on Unlicensed Massage Workers,” Hartford Advocate, January 10 2008.
- “Man Arrested in Westport for Running Brothels Gets 5 Years,” Westport Now, May 29 2008.
- “‘Jezebel’ Escort Arrested in Stratford,” Connecticut Post, July 11 2013.
- “Prostitution Bust at Stratford Hotel,” Stratford Star, October 24 2013.
- “Ban on Hourly Rates at Motels Possible in Stratford,” Connecticut Post, February 17 2015.
- https://www.ctpost.com/policereports/article/Stratford-cops-Prostitution-drug-dealing (2016)
- https://www.nbcconnecticut.com/Stratford-Roommates-Arrested-on-Prostitution-Drug-Charges-Advertising-Backpage (2016)
Documented Violence Against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:
- “Former Chesterville Woman Found Slain,” Lewiston Sun Journal, July 28 1995.
- “Dumped Body Identified as Prostitute,” New Haven Register, July 29 1995.
- “Stripper Murder Probe Stymied,” New Haven Register, August 15 1995.
- “Police Await DNA Test Results,” New Haven Register, August 22 1995.
- “Stratford Slaps New Rules on Sex Shops,” New Haven Register, November 13 1996.
- “Police Blotter; Sex and Scissors,” Stratford Star, April 17 2014.
- “Pimp Accused of Stealing ATM Card from Disabled Man,” Connecticut Post, February 25 2015.