Temple is a Texas city of roughly 79160 residents, situated south of Waco near Killeen in Bell County. Prostitution has been identified by law enforcement as a problem in the city, and residents have complained to police about prostitution in certain neighborhoods.
The Temple Police Department has conducted reverse stings since 1995 to address community complaints about prostitution in the city, and has released the names of arrested sex buyers since at least 2003. In 2007, for example, TPD officers conducted a two-month-long prostitution sting that led to the arrests of dozens of suspected sex “sellers” and their alleged customers; among those picked up in the sweep were two 16-year-old prostituted girls.
In February 2018 the Bell County Sheriff’s Office announced that deputies arrested thirty men during a prostitution reverse sting. The arrests were made during a two day period on February 1st and February 6th. The men thought they were meeting a prostitute at a hotel in Temple for sex. Four of the men arrested are active duty military, serving at Fort Hood. One of the soldiers is accused of bringing rope, duct tape, and a body bag to his meeting with what he thought was a prostitute. Three of the men are undocumented immigrants who would be deported, according to the sheriff’s office. The men — who range from 17 to 57 years old — all face prostitution charges which are Class B misdemeanors, but many received additional charges for drugs and drug paraphernalia. This 2018 operation was conducted was reportedly the fourth and largest sting to date in the city.
In August, 2019, a combined sting/reverse sting in Bell County led to the arrest of eight sex buyers, whose identities and photos were included in news releases. The arrests occurred in the Temple area, and two of the men arrested were Fort Hood soldiers, and another employed at the Killeen Chamber of Commerce.
- Temple Police Department
- Bell County Sheriff’s Office
- Reverse Stings (with Shaming since at least 2003):
- “Police Arrest 15 People in Operation,” Temple Daily Telegram, August 2 2001.
- “Undercover Operations Net 42,” Temple Daily Telegram, June 12 2002.
- “Sting Results in Arrests,” Temple Daily Telegram, August 6 2003.
- “Complaints by Residents Leads to Prostitution Sting by Police,” Temple Daily Telegram, August 10 2003.
- “Undercover Sting Nabs 26 for Soliciting,” Temple Daily Telegram, October 5 2004.
- “Two-Month Prostitution Sting Nets Dozens of Arrests,” CBS/KWTX-TV 10, June 13 2007.
- “Temple Sting Nets 55 Arrests,” Temple Daily Telegram, June 14 2007.
- http://www.centexproud.com/news/local/30-men-arrested-in-bell-county-prostitution-sting (February 2018)
- https://www.kwtx.com/content/news/Local-prostitution-sting-snares-more-than-a-dozen (August, 2019)
- https://www.kcentv.com/article/news/local/six-arrested-in-temple-area-prostitution-sting/ (2020)
- https://www.kwtx.com/2020/09/25/local-deputies-arrest-six-in-prostitution-sting/ (2020)
- https://www.kxxv.com/hometown/bell-county/six-arrested-during-prostitution-sting-in-temple (2020)
- Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:
- Background on Prostitution in the Area:
- “East Side Targeted for Cleanup,” Temple Daily Telegram, May 25 2007.
- “Crackdown: Motel Owner Allowed Illegal Activities,” Temple Daily Telegram, June 16 2007.
- “Local Motel Owner Arrested on Federal Charges,” CBS/KWTX-TV 10, June 16 2007.
- “As Stores Moved Out, Crime Moved In,” Temple Daily Telegram, March 23 2008.
- “Avenue G’s Decline, Slow Rebirth,” Temple Daily Telegram, March 23 2008.