Three women face solicitation charges, are released from jail
Three women charged with solicitation in a weekend sting were released from jail Monday, bringing the total of those arrests to eight.
According to Portsmouth police, Rebecca Newman, 32, of 1701 11th St., Portsmouth; Elizabeth Diller, 46, of 1553 Ninth St., Portsmouth; and Rachel Kerns, 37, of 390 Central Ave., West Portsmouth, all were arrested on Friday, and each was charged with three counts of soliciting.
According to police reports, Diller and Newman each offered to have sexual contact with three undercover police informants Friday night, for $20 each. The conversation was overheard and recorded by officers, and both were arrested on multiple charges of soliciting, and taken to Scioto County Jail.
Kerns also offered to have sexual contact with the three informants on Friday, for $30 each. She later was arrested. She reportedly told officers she saw an opportunity to make a quick $100, and just could not pass it up.
These three arrests were made as part of a sting operation conducted by Portsmouth Police Department, which previously reported five citations in Monday's issue of the Daily Times. Among those previously reported were Kenneth Kropp of Portsmouth, Robert Neal of Wheelersburg, Laurentino Lagunes-Hernandez of Portsmouth, and Cecelio Escobar and Walter Mendez, both of Grayson, Ky. All five were seen in Portsmouth Municipal Court on Monday. The status of their appearances was not available at press time.
"The police department receives complaints from residents about prostitution in that part of town, Eighth Street," said police Detective Jim Charles. "Through a sting operation, we tried to slow it down or lessen it."
Charles said the area where they receive the most complaints about prostitution is the Eighth Street area from the 1700 block to the 2000 block, as well as the streets off of Eighth Street, including Campbell Avenue, Adams Street and Brown Street down to Seventh Street.
He said police will continue to go after both the prostitutes and their customers.
RYAN SCOTT OTTNEY can be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 235.