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Torrington is a city of about 35,000 residents located in the Northwest Hills region of Connecticut, in Litchfield County. Prostitution and sex trafficking activity have been documented in the city and surrounding region. For example, in 2010 state prosecutors charged a man with operating a high-profile prostitution ring in the rural areas of northwest Connecticut, including Litchfield County. The man was referred to as “the sex king” by area media outlets, resulting from his operation of a high-profile “escort” ring. In 1998 he was found guilty on three counts related to operating a prostitution ring. In March 2015, a Roxbury (a small town in lower Litchfield County) resident was arrested on prostitution and drug charges at a Shelton hotel following an online prostitution sting. The sting was set up in response to complaints of online prostitution occurring in hotels. In February 2017, a woman was arrested in Torrington by Connecticut State Police and faced multiple criminal charges associated with prostitution. The woman was profiting from the prostitution of person(s) under the age of 18 (i.e., child sex trafficking), according to state police. Officials said she planned to use the underage individuals to extort money from an unnamed person. Police learned of her activities and began an investigation, eventually obtaining a warrant to arrest her, and she was arrested and charged with first-degree conspiracy to promote prostitution, two counts of first-degree promoting prostitution, first-degree conspiracy to commit assault, first-degree conspiracy to commit robbery, first-degree conspiracy to commit larceny and first-degree conspiracy to commit larceny by extortion. In March 2019, a woman was charged with prostitution after police investigated a tip from a massage customer at a spa in Simsbury.
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. For example, in May 2019, Torrington police arrested two people on prostitution charges following a random inspection of a massage parlor and a spa. During the inspections, the Department of Labor found violations at both locations. Detectives also observed suspicious activity between a male patron and the spa owner, and after further investigation the spa owner was charged with prostitution. The patron, a 70-year-old man, was issued a misdemeanor summons for patronizing a prostitute, and his identity was included in news releases.
- Torrington Police Department
Sex Buyer Arrest, Identity Disclosure:
- https://www.wfsb.com/spa-owner-patron-arrested-during-prostitution-bust-in-torrington (2019)
- https://www.rep-am.com/two-charged-with-prostitution-at-torrington-spa (2019)
- https://www.wtnh.com/litchfield/2-facing-prostitution-charges-following-inspections-at-torrington-massage-parlors (2019)
- https://www.nbcconnecticut.com/Prostitution-Charges-After-Inspection-at-Torrington-Massage-Parlor (2019)
Background on Local Prostitution and Sex Trafficking:
- https://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/two arrested on prostitution charges (1995)
- https://www.sheltonherald.com/police-sting-woman-charged-with-prostitution-crack-possession-at-shelton-hotel (2015)
- http://connecticut.news12.com/police-arrest-woman-on-prostitution-charges-in-torrington (2017)
- https://www.registercitizen.com/Waterbury-woman-charged-in-Torrington-with-Promoting Prostitution (2017)
- https://www.registercitizen.com/woman-charged-in-prostitution-at-CT-massage (2019)