Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP take aim at sex trade industry

Six Johns, Six Janes arrested in fall crackdown by local RCMP detachment

The Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP detachment has been cracking down on the local sex trade industry.

The initiative came as result of numerous complaints from the public.

“The sex trade was very open and active in Vernon, primarily within a specific area of the downtown core,” said RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk. “These activities led to numerous complaints by concerned citizens and elected officials. The complaints lead to investigations of assaults, property, and mischief related crimes in the area.”

In September, efforts were directed towards the consumers or “Johns.”

A total of six men were arrested for communication for the purpose of prostitution and subsequently released for future court dates.

Each of the accused is provided an opportunity to attend a seminar commonly referred to as John School, a seminar paid for by the accused, and if they successfully complete the course charges will not be forwarded to Crown counsel.

“The intent is to change the behavior of these men,” said Molendyk.

In October, officers’ efforts were directed towards the sex trade workers or “Janes.”

Six women were arrested for communication for the purpose of prostitution.

“The focus of our investigation was to connect the woman with community resources in our city,” said Molendyk.

“Representatives from Interior Health met with each one of them as part of our community mobilization to provide information relating to community services available to the women for the purpose of assisting them in locating the resources like food, and shelter to enable them to make healthily changes in their lifestyle.”

The women will be given the chance to attend a workshop with the Now Society, a sex workers alternative program based out of Kelowna. The program is to assist them in acquiring access to a support network to re-build their lives.

Molendyk said the local detachment has a duty to investigate and disrupt the sex trade activity because of complaints and safety concerns.

“In part it was to identify those involved on both sides of the industry,” said Molendyk. “It is one of the tools we utilize to disrupt the illicit sex trade. We use it in conjunction with other efforts, including working with partner agencies to meet the overall objectives of: reducing the impact that the illicit sex trade has on public safety in our community.”

 

Just Posted

Our History In Pictures

Band entertains crowd at downtown Vernon Eaton’s in 1960

Vernon speaker to motivate Cariboo residents after mill shutdowns

Change management speaker Mark DeVolder will deliver town hall keynote in 100 Mile House

Falkland Fancy Fest will have human Hungry Hungry Hippos game

No Nap Records offering live music, camping and games in Falkland on July 27

Former B.B. King bassist will sing the blues in Vernon

Russell Jackson and his band will play in Vernon for the first time on July 27

Vernon Women’s Transition House changes name

Name changed to Archway Society for Domestic Peace to showcase all programs offered

When walls talk: Vernon murals see generation II

“This new movement, an app, will bring the strength of some of those same Vernon visionaries together again into a newdigital form”

Alberta judge denies B.C.’s bid to block ‘Turn Off the Taps’ bill

He said the proper venue for the disagreement is Federal Court

Hespeler had connection to Mennonite migration

Home in Summerland was built in 1907, moved when the highway was changed

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

Researchers found performance on key areas varies by province and territory

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

COLUMN: Looking back to a time of optimism

The first lunar landing 50 years ago was a time to celebrate dreams and accomplishments

Highway 1 closed near Revelstoke

No estimated time for opening

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

Most Read