By Stephen Mayer, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -
A loophole in city law gave officers the right to arrest a prostitute, but not a pimp. That loophole is now closed.
The city council just passed tough new rules when it comes to prostitution. The goal is to not just go after prostitutes and their clients, but the middlemen who set up those meetings.
Prostitution is an age-old problem, one that's especially bad on the city's east side. Until now, the vice squad could arrest the prostitutes and those who pay for their services, but not the so-called pimps who promoted prostitution.
Councilman Scott Wagner said only the sheriff's office or state police had the power to go after the middlemen, so he spearheaded an effort to update city codes to give police the tools they need to crackdown on those who profit the most from prostitution.
"What we find is sometimes when the state or county don't have the ability or the time to go after these then we want to do that at the city level, this allows us to do that," Wagner said.
The changes also increase the fine to $1,000 and add jail time to anyone guilty of promoting prostitution.
Wagner admits it may not be the most pressing criminal activity facing police, but he said it's one that can adversely impact entire neighborhoods.
"Really what we are trying to do is get after the quality of life issues in some of our urban core neighborhoods that have been victimized by this. We're just trying to affect the quality of life," the councilman said.
Wagner is hoping the move by the council will put those who profit from human trafficking on notice.
The city council unanimously passed the resolution Thursday - they must wait ten full days for it to take effect.
Copyright 2012 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
Tuesday, June 18 2013 8:08 PM EDT2013-06-19 00:08:57 GMT
Independence police say they want to question two men about the theft of the iconic statue outside the National Trails Museum.Police released photos of the two men dragging a large tub. The men seem toMore >
Independence police say they want to question two men about the theft of the iconic statue outside the National Trails Museum.More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:06 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:06:25 GMT
Gary Simpson admitted Tuesday that he so badly abused an infant last year that her skull was fractured.Simpson was a friend and live-in nanny to a Johnson County family. He repeatedly abused the then 2/12-month-oldMore >
Gary Simpson admitted Tuesday that he so badly abused an infant last year that her skull was fractured.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 9:55 AM EDT2013-06-19 13:55:47 GMT
Former Kansas City Royals great Willie Wilson had to give up his World Series ring when he declared bankruptcy. Now his family, friends and fans are working to get it back. They're using Twitter andMore >
Former Kansas City Royals great Willie Wilson had to give up his World Series ring when he declared bankruptcy. Now his family, friends and fans are working to get it back.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 12:42 PM EDT2013-06-19 16:42:14 GMT
Authorities are looking for a missing elderly couple.Garnett Police Chief Kevin Pekarek said Vernon and Goldie Hunt left their home about 6:30 a.m. Monday for Dwight, IL. Vernon is 92 years old and GoldieMore >
Authorities say a missing elderly Kansas couple has been found safe in Michigan.More >
Tuesday, June 18 2013 5:42 PM EDT2013-06-18 21:42:41 GMT
A man accused of raping a woman last month and then kidnapping her over the weekend is on the run in the Lake of the Ozarks area, authorities said Monday night.More >
Law enforcement agencies in central Missouri are searching for a man wanted in connection with the kidnapping of a woman over the weekend. Brian J. Adkison is also accused of raping that same woman last month. More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 9:11 AM EDT2013-06-19 13:11:38 GMT
Police are investigating a shooting Wednesday morning.Officers responded to the non life-threatening shooting shortly after 5 a.m. at a home located near East 24th Avenue and Ozark Street. The neighborhoodMore >
Police are investigating a shooting Wednesday morning.More >
Wednesday, June 19 2013 5:45 AM EDT2013-06-19 09:45:09 GMT
A guerrilla gardener is on the loose in the Westport area, trying to beautify blighted areas once sat barren. Guerrilla gardeners grow plants, herbs and vegetables on public pieces of land that are inMore >
A blighted public area is now being called The Magic Garden after a woman decided to transform a neglected spot near the Westport post office.More >