Sep 2, 2012 12:37 AM by Jacqui Heinrich
Colorado Springs Police Department's Metro Vice, Narcotics, & Intel Division conducted a major prostitution bust Friday night in Colorado Springs.
Eight people were arrested at the intersection of Bijou St. and Bonfoy Ave., allegedly for involvement in prostitution. The police report says an investigation was launched after receiving numerous complaints of increased prostitution activity in the area.
John Duvall works at a business right across the street from where the bust happened; he says he witnessed the whole thing. "We noticed that there was a guy over here kind of keeping an eye with binoculars this direction, and after a few minutes we kind of wondered what he was looking at so we stepped out to take a look and we had seen a lady was in the middle of the street."
Duvall says it looked like a sting operation. "She was kind of dancing around when cars were going by and that sort of thing, so it kind of gave us this impression that something was going on. I guess she was trying to get 'johns'."
After about twenty minutes Duvall noticed a white vehicle circling the block and stopping to talk to the man with binoculars in the car across Platte Ave. "The two vehicles would stop and talk with one another, the other vehicles stopped and talked to the lady momentarily. I mean it was quite obvious what was going on," he says.
Before long, eight people were taken into custody. Duvall says its high time an arrest was made. "It's a pretty hot spot for the red lights. Generally what will happen is a pickup takes place over here... and a drop off will take place right over here, " he says, gesturing to the corner of Platte Ave & Bonfoy Ave.
It's such a "hot spot", he says, he can recognize familiar faces. "Regulars? The lady with the dog and there's one lady that always wears really tight pants thats walking around here...there's always a gentleman that catches up with them. I don't know if he's running the set-up or what's going on, but there's always a dude on a bike that shows up right here and everybody talks to each other then everybody leaves."
D.J. Achaya also works at a business on that corner. He says he sees prostitutes walking the streets all the time. "They try to stop me every time I drive Platte, they wave at me."
Achaya says the crackdown isn't surprising; he's seen this type of activity for years. Displaying a booklet of arrest mugshots, he told News 5, "Police dropped this book off like 2 years ago in this business and they said if we see any of those [people], call them."
Duvall is sure there are more than eight people working the area, but he's glad police are working to stop it. "I do think that it's a good thing that they're getting involved, yet at the same time the involvement is kind of on the wrong side. I think they should be helping the women rather than busting collars."
Duvall says most of the women he sees walking up and down Platte Ave. get in and out of cars four to five times each day, and most look like they're involved in heavy drug use. He's calling on police not only to stop the men seeking their services, but also to get those women some help.