MEMPHIS, Tenn. —Police arrested four women and two men following an undercover operation about one mile from a school in Binghampton.
They were all taken into custody on Tuesday in the area of Lester and Faxon.
According to police, a decoy engaged in a conversation of a sexual nature and the women agreed to perform sex acts for $20.
Police charged the four women with prostitution near a school and the two men with soliciting prostitution near a school. The intersection is one mile from Lester School.
“There’s something that happened in their lives historically that’s led these women to the place where they’re willing to accept $20 for a sex act,” said Rachel Haaga, Executive Director at Restore Corps, an organization that helps survivors of human trafficking.
She was referencing the arrest affidavits for the four women, which stated they offered to perform sex acts for an undercover cop in exchange for money.
But when WREG try to look up what happened with the men, we couldn’t find any information.
“That’s not terribly surprising to me,” Haaga said.
Authorities explained: when officers are making an arrest for a misdemeanor, they have the discretion to either bring that person in to jail or let them go with a citation. Their goal is to ensure the crime doesn’t continue.
So in this case, they arrested all six people on misdemeanors, but only brought the women to jail and let the men go home with citations.
They said the officers assume that with the women gone, the men are no longer a risk to commit a crime like soliciting prostitution.
“There is inequality in how it’s treated because for all too long we’ve thought, ‘Boys will be boys,’” Haaga said.
Instead, Haga said society needs to put as much pressure on men as they do women.
“If more buyers were arrested and if it was riskier for the buyers to go out and pay for sex in our community then even the women and traffickers would be decreased,” she said.
She said there has been progress in this regard, but there’s a still a lot more work to do.
Police saie they questioned the women but didn’t identify any of them as victims of sex-trafficking.
Haaga tells us the women will have the option to enter into a Restore Corps treatment class in the coming weeks.