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Posted on Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 5:54 a.m.

Sheriff's Department launches new web page featuring mugshots of men caught soliciting prostitutes

By Tom Perkins

Johns seeking prostitutes along East Michigan Avenue in Ypsilanti Township could earn their 15 minutes of fame if they are arrested for the crime.

The Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office is now posting mugshots of suspects on a new page intended to widely distribute their faces to the public.

So far, the faces of three men arrested in a September prostitution sting operation are published on the site, and the Sheriff’s department says it will notify the media as new photos are posted.

The photos will go on the site after the men are arraigned.

“It’s hopefully going to have a deterrent effect in the long term,” said Mike Radzik, Ypsilanti Township’s director of police services. “We’re trying to get the word out: ‘Don’t come to East Michigan Avenue to look for prostitutes because there are serious consequences.’”

The new effort targeting the demand side of the prostitution trade is part of the Enforcement Against Streetwalking in Ypsilanti (EASY) joint operation conducted by the Ypsilanti Police Department and Sheriff’s Department along East Michigan Avenue.

Businesses and residents have long complained about prostitution in the corridor, and the two departments teamed up because their jurisdictional boundaries cut through the area.

Despite making hundreds of arrests, the agencies haven’t seen much success in stemming the problem and are trying new approaches. The area is even listed on sex sites where johns can rate the prostitutes and alert one another to a crackdown by police. Previous stories on prostitution have appeared on at least one of the sites.

The Ypsilanti Police Department isn’t posting john’s pictures, so only those who are caught in Ypsilanti Township or the Sheriff Department’s jurisdiction will have their photos posted online. Ypsilanti Police Chief Amy Walker said posting johns’ photos is a policy decision made by City Council. Ypsilanti Mayor Paul Schreiber said there was never a resolution on the question, but said he wasn't sure how effective posting the pictures would be.

Radzik said police officials now have a three-pronged approach in targeting the johns. If caught, johns will have their cars impounded and must pay the county $750 to get them back. That money is used to cover overtime costs for deputies on the undercover sting operations.

Johns are also criminally charged and sent to a “john school” at which women who were former prostitutes discuss the hardships of their former life. Radzik said it is similar to the victim-impact panel for drunken drivers.

The sting operations usually net around six to eight johns or prostitutes, depending on who is being targeted, but are only run intermittently because of logistical and financial challenges.

Sheriff's Lt. Jim Anuszkiewicz said the joint operation has been going well, and the departments have seen strong results. He said the photos are another tool.

"We’re hoping to send a message to individuals that decide to engage in this activity in Ypsilanti Township and Washtenaw County that their photo will be published," Anuszkiewicz said. " Whether this is a deterrent or not is yet to be seen. We have seen agencies around the country doing this and feel it could serve as an effective tool to addressing this historic issue.''

Radzik said the pictures of perpetrators will likely be online after they are arraigned, which will typically be within two weeks. A similar effort in Chicago that has proven successful was the inspiration for the department's program.

This year, EASY also implemented a new program designed to help pull prostitutes from the streets and offer resources to turn their lives around. The new program, which involves a collaboration between both departments, the judicial system and county social workers, was created after police regularly arrested the same repeat offenders.

Officials say they have seen some early successes in that program, and are hopeful posting the photos will offer another deterrent.


Ming Bucibei

Mon, Nov 7, 2011 : 6:50 p.m.

Pure legalized entrapment!! Female coppers dressed as prostitutes , & acting as if the were prostitutes!! looks like a duck walks like a duck talks like a duck!! Ming Bucibei


Mon, Nov 7, 2011 : 2:04 a.m.

How about a website with mugshots of police officers accused of crimes?


Sun, Nov 6, 2011 : 6:12 p.m.

Brilliant! Johns (men) have been long protected by the system of law enforcement over sex crimes. This is a sex crime and not at all victim-less. Just because one must resort to selling oneself doesn't make it wonderful or even ok for them, and its not always a choice. The fact is that most prostitutes begin as underage girls forced into the life - why? BECAUSE OF THE TREMENDOUS DEMAND BY MEN FOR PAID SEX WITH YOUNG WOMEN / GIRLS OR THOSE WHO LOOK YOUNG. That doesn't even begin to touch the women abducted from other countries and sold into sexual servitude here. Bravo to the police.


Sun, Nov 6, 2011 : 12:30 p.m.

i would rather see mugs shots of drug dealers, drug users, rapists, child abusers...... johns are on the low end of my scale of big dangers to society.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 11:19 p.m.

Seriously? What a total waste of resources and money. There is an ethical issue here as well, considering the men haven't yet been convicted of a crime in our court system. People really think prostitution is a big deal? Especially in this present economic climate? Make free condoms and sterile needles easily available, and legalize prostitution. It's way more cost effective, safer for all people involved, cost less in city and court expenses, and will decrease organized criminal activity in the area. Ah...but we won't make that precious revenue from the cars being towed and the fines being handed out, now will we... Next thing they'll have is a website with people caught selling Marijuana. This is such a waste of time and money.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 11:54 p.m.

I see they are not in your back yard.... Were your kids play and you find dirty needles.. When it is then you tell me how you feel !!!!


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 7:32 p.m.

You GO WCSD!! Sounds like a good plan to me.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:53 p.m.

I live in this area and I am tired of seeing this go on outside of my house everyday.... I would like some of you have this happen in your neighborhood and not complain about... having them be picked up and dropped off right beside your house when your kids are outside seeing this happen day after day... It is sick!!! We are done and tired of having to live like this

Marilyn Wilkie

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:34 p.m.

Actually, I remember a time when the Ann Arbor News posted John's pictures in the newspaper. I suppose someone threatened to sue. I would imagine a John could bring aids home to his wife or girlfriend. Not a nice gift. We do remember aids, don't we? In my opinion women who sell their bodies have big problems in their lives, one way or another. This is sad.


Mon, Nov 7, 2011 : 2:08 a.m.

The women have prolems because treatment takes a back seat to enforcement. We put folks in jail, give them criminal records, prohibit them from making an honest living thereafter. And you think this is productive?

Marilyn Wilkie

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:27 p.m.

Prostitution is not a victimless crime. Have you ever heard the term "Pimp"? What comes into your head when you hear that word?

The Picker

Tue, Nov 8, 2011 : 1:07 a.m.

ple Just say'in


Mon, Nov 7, 2011 : 2:06 a.m.

Marilyn, how about Amterdam.....Victoms are created by the enforcement and criminalization of the profession. You need to do your research.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:08 p.m.

The focus has most often been on the prostitute so it is good that those who are purchasing the services are being equally targeted. The crime of prostitution is not a victimless crime. Businesses are financially impacted with the unwanted criminal traffic that is generated by prostitution. The residents that live in areas frequented by prostitution traffic are also victims. All of us who pay taxes are victims of this crime with the wasted resources that go into attempting to protect the businesses and residents that live in the prostituion corridors. The prostitutes and their families themselves are victims of abuse, disease and most often drug addictions. The new strategy that is being employed to focus on the "John's" is a strategy that has worked in other communities. The customers of prostitution in our community would surprise most. Many times they are professors, lawyers, teachers, parents and husbands, many times living in our community. Those who engage in hiring a prostitute in our community are from all socio-economic backgrounds. They usually move quickly to settle their criminal cases, pay the money required to get their cars back and above all do not want any publicity surrounding their criminal behavior. Most have families and wives. Publicly posting their arrest and pictures will probably not in itself stop their criminal behavior but given the choice where they chose to commit this crime, in a community that openly displays what is public information with a picture on a website or a community where they can continue to stay below the radar and quickly pay their fines and walk away, the choice will no longer be in Washtenaw County.

Tom Perkins

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:05 p.m.

Ron and G. Orwell, A criminal's names, photos, etc. become public information when they are charged. Anyone can look it up. and every other newspaper frequently puts up the same information for all types of crimes before people are convicted. The source of that information is the Sheriff's Department or other police agencies. Officials in this case decided to wait until arraignment to put the info/photos on the Sheriff's Department's website. Attorneys for all parties involved, the courts and prosecutor's office have discussed this program and are comfortable with it.

The Picker

Tue, Nov 8, 2011 : 1:02 a.m.

Why not just hold the trials on the world wide web. Who needs all those iccy things like a judge and jury?


Sun, Nov 6, 2011 : 6:15 p.m.

It doesn't make it wrong, either.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 11:25 p.m.

That doesn't make it right.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:03 p.m.

Can we add mugshots of Sheriff's officers caught stealing $20 from cars in the parking lot or Sheriff's detectives that drive off the road in a departmental car and wait until the next day to report it? The Sheriff needs to clean up crime closer to home.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3:55 p.m.



Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3:40 p.m.

One order of 15 minutes of fame, please, to go.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3:25 p.m.

Prostitution... Hey, we can say it. We're big kids now. A lot of times, it helps to understand a word if you break it down. Lets do that now, shall we? &quot;Pros&quot; - Doesn't mean anything. &quot;T*t&quot; - I think we all know what that means. &quot;Tu&quot; - Ok, two t*t... and... &quot;Tion&quot; of course, from the Latin, to &quot;shun&quot;, to push away, say no thank you. Doesn't even belong in this word. I feel a lot of love here in this forum, so now I think it's important that I see all..... ______ The above wonderful dialogue is thanks to Michael Keaton from the hilarious scene below. Anyone talking about Prostitution must watch this before further commenting. <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3:24 p.m.

Although I certainly dont agree with the Johns , are we still innocent until proven ......, I have an idea arrest the crooks in the White House that came from Wall Street ! Who comes up with these ideas ?

paul wiener

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3:02 p.m.

All efforts to criminalize and punish men who look to &quot;prostitutes&quot; (i.e., women who exercise the right to do with their bodies what they wish) for sexual relief and gratification are ridiculous, criminal acts, the result of stupid, bigoted, ignorant zealots and sexually perverse, misogynistic moralists. The same applies to all those who criminalize &quot;prostitutes.&quot; These are among many legalistic practices that make the United States the laughing stock of much of the advanced world.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 5:27 p.m.

Male prostitutes are VERY common as well...just sayin'

Ron Granger

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3 p.m.

Tom, I appreciate the update. I believe that was already clear when I made my comment. My concerns remain. Arraigned and charged is very different from *CONVICTED*. The Sheriff's department should not be *smearing* reputations online before conviction. That is not what we pay them to do. It does not matter that the booking photos are public record. The Sheriff department is engaging in punishment before conviction. Let the legal system work it's slow way... Many such &quot;stings&quot; are found to be entrapment. That further muddies the &quot;wasn't convicted of anything but my reputation was destroyed&quot;.. Before the internet, this was not such an issue. If media outlets want to obtain and publish photos before conviction, that is their right. But the Sheriff's department should not be engaged in such antics. And they are antics. Ultimately, I think it is more bad press for Ypsilanti.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:20 p.m.


Tom Perkins

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 2:41 p.m.

The story has been updated to clarify that the pictures are posted online after the johns are arraigned and the charges are public information.


Sun, Nov 6, 2011 : 6:18 p.m.

Peoples name and likenesses are published ALL THE TIME when they are charged, for a variety of offences. This is not new and not unusual. That you find this particular offense lurid and disgusting speaks volumes. It's worse to be charged for soliciting a prostitute than murder, rape or child abuse? Really? I find this all sooooooo hypocritical.

G. Orwell

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 3:17 p.m.

There is a huge difference between having a person's name on a wall for being charged of soliciting a prostate compared to having his name and face plastered on the World Wide Web. If my face were placed on the website, I would sue for millions.

Ron Granger

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 2:07 p.m.

For those who say this crime has no victim, I strongly disagree. I don't want prostitution around my home, or my business. It lowers the quality of life for everyone. It lowers property values. And that is even ignoring the drug and other crime that tends to come with it. Take it off the streets - regulate it, whatever. But don't suggest having it occur on the steps of your dwelling or business is &quot;just fine&quot;.

G. Orwell

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 2:05 p.m.

IS THIS CONSTITUTIONAL? No judge, no jury. Who decides a person is soliciting prostitutes?

Ron Granger

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 2:04 p.m.

So they want to smear and destroy reputations BEFORE CONVICTION. And the article says the council did not vote on this, and they're not quite sure where the policy came from. They need to vote on something as stupid as this, with a roll call so we know who believes in guilt without trial. This is an attempt to convict people without trial, in the media. It is wrong.


Sun, Nov 6, 2011 : 6:22 p.m.

We publish photos and names of all sorts of people CHARGED with crimes all the time in this nation. How in the world do you think court TV operates or trials are so famous?? Seems to me you are more worried about being charged with a lurid crime here; what a double standard. It's ok that people charged with rape, murder and child porn are reported on, but not men who solicit prostitution? Why? Because you may know them or be related to them? Because its many men's dirty secret and they might be outed? Good grief - sex crimes are still crimes. Don't like it? Don't put yourself in a position to be charged.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 2:01 p.m.

There's seven cop pictures on that page.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 1:59 p.m.

I like Cris Rock's solution for gun crimes: Make ammunition cost like $300 per bullet. Punks would be unable to afford it and even if they did, they would hold on to the two or three they could afford, not wanting to waste them on other punks.

The Picker

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 1:59 p.m.

I'm having a hard time figuring out who the offended party is here. The police chief? The Mayor? It seems like another example of law enforcment going after the low hanging fruit, wasting our precious resources on victimless crime. As we know, Ypsi is short on cash and this kind of police work only strengthens the hand of those wishing to cut police services. Get the murders, rapists, home invaders, and those that do bodily harm to our citizens.Stop this titilation of the media and the self indulgent pleasure you receive from this kind of police work.

The Picker

Tue, Nov 8, 2011 : 1:11 a.m.

Not hearing much from the offended in this article.


Mon, Nov 7, 2011 : 1:06 a.m.

Yet another individual who needs a civics/government lesson. I'm not sure why you're having a hard time figuring out the &quot;offended party&quot; when it says plainly in the article, for those who don't know how these things work, that the people in the area are asking the police for help. Do you understand? John Q. Homeowner picks up the phone or fires up his/her email and asks the police to stop the parade of hookers and creeps in front of the home and/or business. The police are doing their jobs. They are responding to citizen complaints. If you spent as much time trying to convince your neighbors to stop calling the police as you spend leveling misplaced criticism, you might get someplace.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 1:56 p.m.

Great - another version of Facebook. Among most of those guys, they will tell their buddies to go that that site and CHECK OUT THEIR PHOTO. Another stupid idea brought to you by the government.

Ron Granger

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 1:02 p.m.

They may way want to hold off. Pretty soon this may be the only commerce Ypsi has.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:33 p.m.

And according to and the ATF, they sell guns there too.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 1:57 p.m.

Forgot trafficking stolen property.

Ron Granger

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 1:03 p.m.

Forgot one other one - the drugs.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:59 p.m.

Sent to &quot;John School&quot; Are you people serious? lol


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:58 p.m.

LOVE THIS!! except for...really? just charged or convicted? would prefer the convicted including those who &quot;plea&quot; deal down a bit.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:55 p.m.

Stupid. Anyone desperate enough to pick up a street walker from Ypsi couldn't care less about their photo on an obscure webpage. This also begs the question. What about other crimes? We gonna get a web page with the faces of people that commit white collar crime too? I didn't think so.

Glen S.

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:53 p.m.

&quot;Arrested?&quot; or &quot;Convicted?&quot; There is a big difference.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:42 p.m.

Seriously? This is what my tax money is being spent on? I can't even leave my house without seeing guys on bikes circling my neighborhood like vultures, looking for houses to rob, six people have been shot in Ypsi in the past month which is not unusual anymore, our streets and our schools have an equal amount of cracks in them, and our local government wants to spend money on shaming johns? What a waste. Do you know why prostitution is called the oldest profession? Because it has been around as long as people have been around. Crackdowns on prostitution only add more people to our &quot;Justice&quot; system and burdens to the taxpayers. Why would posting pics of johns online decrease demand for prostitution? I hadn't noticed any decline in sexually frustrated men and poor, uneducated, drug-addicted women in the area, which are the main ingredients for prostitution. The article says&quot;Despite making hundreds of arrests, the agencies haven't seen much success in stemming the problem and are trying new approaches. The area is even listed on sex sites where johns can rate the prostitutes and alert one another to a crackdown by police.&quot; There have been thousands of arrests for prostitution in this area over the years and yet the prostitutes are still there. Places like Chicago post pictures of johns online yet Chicago is overrun with prostitutes. We will NEVER stop prostitution. We can only regulate it to make sure it is as safe as such an activity can be made. Stop wasting our tax money on an unsolveable problem and spend it on more police officers on our streets or at least spend it on services that prevent future prostitutes, like education and drug counseling. And maybe we could even spend a couple of bucks fixing these craters we call roads.


Mon, Nov 7, 2011 : 1 a.m.

Ryan, you missed the part where it says your fellow citizens are complaining night and day about the hookers and their customers. Are the police supposed to ignore their requests for service? Well? The police have to enforce the laws as they exist today, not how they might exist some day, whether or not they agree with the laws. Maybe you should go on a door-to-door campaign to get all those homeowners who are sick of their kids running into hookers in their driveways when the kids come home from school or go out to play. Used condoms in your front yard are always a nice touch around the holidays, too. I would focus all that enthusiasm on your legislators, and save a big portion for the Ypsilanti City Council, who has, yet again, made a shortsighted, dunderheaded decision. If Washtenaw County is publishing pictures, and Ypsi City is not, where do you think all the activity will now migrate?


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 4:18 p.m.

@lisasimpson-- $750 per john caught covers all the expenses of this program? Yeah, right. I can't even fix a dent in my car door for $750. Also, the article says the fee goes to cover the cost of deputy overtime; NOWHERE in the article does it say that it is self funded by these fees. It MAY cover some of the overtime cost (although I highly doubt it) but what about court costs, this crazy &quot;john school&quot;, website administration, police paperwork, wear and tear on vehicles, etc.. all of which cost money. It also takes officers from covering real crimes like robbery, assault, and murders (which we have plenty of) and wastes their time with a relatively minor crime like prostitution. That is a losing proposition for every taxpayer in Ypsilanti.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 2:56 p.m.

The article states that this is a self-funded program. The impound fees pay for the overtime for the officers.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:37 p.m.

I'm not opposed to the posting of the 'John's' faces on a police site. I wonder if any of the grad students of U of M &amp; EMU have looked into who uses the services of a prostitute? The mechanism's of the two genders are certainly on different clocks even though both are compatible to survival of humans. I suspect the reason is females (thorough childbrith) face far more risk then males; so males are far more able to mate longer and more frequently. Some of our culture conflicts show up in movie star marriages where Autumen males divorce &amp; marry Spring / Summer females. Because of the immaturity of many readers this would not be a subject of discussion of the various disciplines about our systems.

Bob Krzewinski

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:14 p.m.

I read once that a similar thing was done to run a strip club out of town somewhere. A group of people would routinely take photos of strip club customers and post them online. We can only imagine, but I just wonder how much of a boost it would be for Ypsi to not have the Deja Vu in town anymore and instead have that location be a community theater.


Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 8:07 p.m.

Yeah, just what Ypsi needs - fewer tax dollars! That'll fix it!

Chip Reed

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:48 p.m.

It was a theater (Martha Washington) but it closed because they couldn't make any money.

Jerome Blue

Sat, Nov 5, 2011 : 12:14 p.m.

Oh so what, legalize prostitution as the the victimless crime it is. These men have nothing to be ashamed about.