Vice Squad
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Back to Kansas...

...and to prostitution. Wichita has its shaming (shameful?) website, and Topeka recently dusted off another tried-and-true method of prostitution control, bringing the local media along on raids to serve as enthusiastic cheerleaders. Here's the end of the linked story:
Women convicted of soliciting prostitution in Topeka receive a mandatory 30-day jail sentence, according to city code. They get 90 days in jail and are required to attend a 30-day treatment program for a second offense. After three or more offenses, they receive a 150-day jail sentence and the 30-day treatment program. The prostitutes are also banned from a four-block radius from where they were arrested.
A 30-day "treatment" program for a prostitution offense? Let's hope that it is an "offer" of treatment for an alcohol or drug addiction.

The news channel couldn't help but to present a follow-up story on prostitution in Topeka. Mostly it concerns the fact that many prostitution arrestees are repeat offenders. But it also throws down the gauntlet at Wichita for primacy in the regulation-by-humiliation game:
The city [Topeka] is also considering the use of public humiliation to curb the problem. The police chief wants to put pictures of prostitutes and the men who hire them on the city's government access cable channel.

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