Tuesday, June 22, 1999

Sting yields 7 arrests in Hamilton

Guilty may have names published

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        HAMILTON — In response to complaints, police here have arrested seven people in a prostitution sting downtown.

        Two suspects failed to appear in Hamilton Municipal Court on Monday, and warrants were issued for their arrest.

        Police are looking for Sandra Lee Ledger, 29, and Jodi Lynn Ayres, 22, both of Hamilton, on charges of prostitution. Ms. Ledger also faces a charge for possession of drug paraphernalia.

        Charges are pending against the remaining woman and four men arrested in the sting, which was conducted Friday after more than a dozen residents had called to complain over the past month, said Sgt. Carl Sigmon, who leads the Hamilton Police Divisions' vice squad.

        If convicted of prostitution-related offenses, the men and women could be subject to having their names and photographs printed in paid advertisements under a new city ordinance.

        But under the ordinance, officials would have to wait until a 30-day appeal period is past before running the ads, which are designed to discourage prostitution and soliciting for prostitutes.

        The ordinance took effect at the end of December.

        The area around Sycamore, Seventh and Eighth streets has been plagued with prostitution despite police efforts.

        “Some of the residents in that general area would call us and say they would see prostitution going on,” he said.

        “All we can do is arrest them, but a lot of times, after we do, they're right back out on the streets,” Sgt. Sigmon said. “It's been a problem for the 10 years that I've been a police officer. We do what we can.”


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