Anne Arundel County, MD

Tactics Used

Reverse stings
Auto seizure
Community service
Public education
Neighborhood action
SOAP orders
John school
Web stings
License suspension

Anne Arundel County is a county of approximately 540,000 residents, located south of Baltimore in Maryland. Situated along Route 295, it contains a cluster of towns and unincorporated areas that are known for prevalent street- and hotel-based prostitution and sex trafficking (e.g, Laurel, Jessup).  Among the problems stemming from the local commercial sex market are assaults on sex sellers, including cases of homicide.  At least one serial rapist of women engaged in prostitution is known to have operated in the city, and there have been many documented cases of robbery and assault.

Among the tactics used to try to contain commercial sex and the crimes surrounding the market are those targeting demand.  The Anne Arundel Police Department has conducted many stings using undercover officers posing as sex sellers and johns, arresting both buyers and sellers.  The names, ages, and hometowns of each arrested individual are released to the media.

For example, in February 2014, AACPD officers conducted a web-based reverse sting that resulted in the arrest of at least one sex buyer. The individual, a man from Pikesville, was apprehended after arriving at a local hotel to meet what he thought was a woman offering commercial sex acts. The john came to the designated location dressed in “a shirt with a gold badge on the front,” and a BB gun. Officers charged him with impersonating a police officer, solicitation, and attempted robbery, as it was determined that the john had planned to rob the prostituted woman.  In March 2014, a web-based reverse sting resulted in 11 arrests in the hotel district near the Washington-Baltimore airport.

Key Sources


State Maryland
Type City
Population 510507
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