Prostitution sting nets 7 arrests in West Palm

Posted at 7:14 PM, Feb 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-11 19:27:24-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla -- An undercover prostitution sting nets seven arrests in West Palm Beach. Neighbors say it's an ongoing problem particularly in the Northwood area.

On Broadway, prostitution is a sight Julie Hyatt see's all too often.

"Daily. Continuously," says Hyatt.

West Palm Police arrested seven overnight and the majority of their arrests are along the Broadway corridor.

"They come out in spurts."

Gail Levine is well aware of the issue, even in her neighborhood south of Downtown West Palm Beach.

She hopes a diversion program called PIPE or Prostitution Impact Prevention Education is making a difference.

Since she started the program in 2000, more than 3,700 first time offenders have gone through and only 22 have reoffended

"Prostitution is never going to go away. However we have to keep it under control, because it really is a detriment to wonderful little neighborhoods," says Levine.

There were a total of 83 prostitution arrests in 2015. Officers say calls for service, knowledge of the area, and citizen complaints are all factors in selecting where these busts happen.