COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Franklin County Sheriff's Office said on Tuesday that it had arrested 37 people in connection with a central Ohio prostitution ring.
Sheriff Zach Scott said that a special investigations unit targeted hotels in the Interstate 270 and U.S. Route 23 area, where most of the arrests were made, 10TV's Glenn McEntyre reported.
The 38 arrests resulted in 54 charges, Scott said.
In one of the cases, investigators said that a prostitute left her 3-year-old child waiting in a car while she was inside a hotel.
"I know that a lot of the public think to some degree this is a victimless crime," Scott said. "It's not true. The underlying crimes that go with the victimless crimes, the thefts, the drugs. This whole thing started out of a drug-related incident."
It is an issue that Franklin County Municipal Court Judge Paul Herbert knows all too well.
"National statistics would say that (for) 90 percent of them, there's somebody or some force behind them doing this,” Herbert said.
More than two years ago Herbert launched the CATCH program which is a special docket aimed at helping woman escape the sex trade.
As part of the CATCH Program, the women work with social workers, have curfews and parenting classes, and are required to show up in court once a week for a progress report.
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