PEORIA – Police a sweeping the streets of prostitutes.
The Peoria Police Department has made more than 15 prostitution-related arrests in the past two months.
This has been a problem for this area before, according to police. Now, they’re now ramping up efforts to prevent this spike in activity from once again growing.
Captain Mike Scally of the Peoria Police Department says officers patrolling the streets recently noticed more suspicious activity.
“Some may just say I'm down on my luck, others may have a drug habit.”
Police want to remind everyone that prostitution is still a criminal offense, no matter what your excuse may be.
“People committing these crimes, they know it's a crime,” Scally explained. “The people live in the neighborhoods, they know it's a crime and you know, it's just something we have to address.”
With a spike in the illegal activity, some are even going undercover to catch these provocative criminals.
“It takes the woman to actually make the deal,” said Scally, “She has to be the one who is trying to entice the men. They can't go out there and entrap them or anything like that.”
Scally says some are even willing to take whatever money they can get.
“Lots of times they'll say 'how much do you have’ and he'll say ‘I've got 35 dollars’ [and she’ll say] ‘Ok, that's good’.”
Police say Morton Square Park is a popular spot to find prostitution. In the last 60 days there have been 3 arrests here, and three others in that area.
However, police say no matter where you are, you're taking a big gamble.
“You never know when we're going to be out there,” warned Scally, “It's not a lifestyle to get into. It's dangerous and bad things can happen to them, and that's also another reason why we try to stop it.”
Scally says if you're convicted of prostitution more than once, you will face felony charges.
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