Warwick, RI

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

Warwick is a city in the greater Providence area of Rhode Island, south of Cranston, and has a population of approximately 85,000.  Prostitution has been known to occur in the city for decades, particularly  indoors in brothels, and the local sex trade generates a wide range of associated crimes. Among the problems associated with commercial sex in the city include a case of human trafficking resulting in an arrest in Warwick of a trafficker operating an interstate circuit.  Prostituted women have also been victims of robbery in Warwick. In April, 2019, eight people were arrested by Warwick police in a string of busts in hotels across the city as part of an effort to crack down on prostitution and drug possession. Police said the arrests were part of “interdepartmental efforts to address crimes of vice and quality of life at local hotels.” Five of the arrests were for prostitution, and other charges included assault, and possession of fentanyl, cocaine, amphetamines, methamphetamine, and other drugs.

Attempts to combat consumer-level demand have been added to the city’s attempts to control sexual exploitation.  After state laws on prostitution changed in 2009 to close a loophole that had inadvertently made certain aspects of commercial sex decriminalized, police conducted several web stings, which resulted in the arrests of men for solicitation. In July, 2019, Warwick police arrested five women and two men in a prostitution sting at a local hotel, but they did not give its name or location to encourage continued cooperation. Police said the operation involved patrol officers, detectives, undercover officers, K-9 and community police. They said the arrests were part of an effort to “address crimes of vice and quality of life issues at local hotels.”  The two men were charged with “procurement of sexual conduct for a fee.”

Key Partners

  • Warwick Rhode Island Police Department
  • Rhode Island State Police

Key Sources

Reverse Stings, Identity Disclosure:

Sex Trafficking and Child Sexual Exploitation in the Area:

Documented Violence Against Individuals Engaged in Prostitution in the Area:

Background on Prostitution in the Area:

State Rhode Island
Type City
Population 85097
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