Hotels enlisted to combat sex traffic

Noting that the sale of young girls for sex often begins with online ads and ends in suburban hotels, a coalition of officials from law enforcement and the hospitality industry launched an initiative to put hotel and motel workers on the front lines of the fight against prostitution.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Investigators who battle sex trafficking are turning to hotels for help, the Pioneer Press and Star Tribune report.

Ramsey County Attorney John Choi, who is leading the effort, gathered with prosecutors and others to announce the initiative. He said his office now prosecutes seven to 10 cases per year involving underage girls and prostitution.

Authorities are training hotel employees on what to look for and when to call police, WCCO reports:

It's not a new tactic, American Public Media's Marketplace program reported.

In a recent related story, CNN profiled a hotel chain expert who authorities often turn to as one of their top sex trafficking sleuths.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2020-11-25 at 7.34.43 AM

Watch: Drunk squirrel in Minnesota captures the world's attention

The squirrel was immediately cut off after nearly tipping over.

Screen Shot 2020-11-25 at 7.15.09 PM

Small town gym refusing to close facing lawsuit from attorney general

The gym is facing a lawsuit and a temporary restraining order to halt their operations.

credit card, payment

Money Gal Coaching: Bouncing back after living your best life

Kelly Blodgett started Money Gal Coaching after paying down nearly $50K in debt in 18 months.

flickr-mall-of-america-mitchell-hirsch-march-2019

When do stores open on Black Friday this year?

Many major retailers will be open Black Friday, some for extended hours.

police tape, crime scene

Man found dead outside home near Cass Lake

The man was reportedly shot outside the property.

Minnesota_Welcome_Sign_-_Minnesota_Welcomes_You_-_Taylors_Falls_(28269804891)

Gov. Walz announces $1M in grants to boost Minnesota tourism

The money will be used for marketing efforts to attract people to Minnesota's hard-hit tourist spots.

coronavirus, ICU

Nov. 25 COVID-19 update: 72 deaths ties Minnesota's single-day high

A COVID-19 update will not be provided on Thanksgiving Day.

Texa-Tonka

Revival to open its fourth Twin Cities location

The fried chicken and smoked meat maestros are moving to St. Louis Park.

Duluth and Case Recreation Center

St. Paul to open two extra temporary shelters for homeless people

Mayor Melvin Carter announced the new shelters will be opened in the event of excess demand.

Related

Officials are working with hotels to combat sex trafficking

They're teaching workers to identify the signs of trafficking victims.

Man, 36, charged with having sex with prostituted minors at Twin Cities hotel

A 36-year-old Elko man is facing four counts of engaging in prostitution with minors after he allegedly met two girls, ages 16 and 17, at an Eagan motel for sex. Mickey Albert Cupkie admitted Thursday that he used his smartphone at his St. Paul job to look up the minors on a web site.

Driver with sex toy booked after slowing traffic, police say

A driver in St. Paul was booked into the Ramsey County jail after a dispatcher told officers to be on the lookout for a man in a pickup truck performing oral sex on a sex toy, who had slowed traffic, the Pioneer Press reports. Police stopped the man and he informed them that he had a sex toy inside his person. "That one's kind of unique. They'll be talking about this one for a while," a police watch commander said.

3 developers interested in MSP airport micro-hotel

The Metropolitan Airports Commission issued a query in June to any developers who might be interested in constructing a small hotel – perhaps 70 or 80 rooms – in an existing parking lot across from the entry to the airport’s main Lindbergh Terminal, Finance and Commerce reports. Three responded, although the small size and sound-proofing issues would make the project difficult, developers say.

Developer plans $12 million hotel on Lake Minnetonka

The proposed 58-room Excelsior Hotel would be the only hotel on the lake and would include retail space and a restaurant. Excelsior's planning commission has approved the deal; the city council takes it up next week.

MDA enlisting dogs to detect emerald ash borer

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is hoping trained detection dogs will help locate ash trees infested with the invasive beetles. The organization Working Dogs for Conservation claims to have found encouraging results in training dogs to find emerald ash borers.