(Clyman) Two people were arrested Thursday at the Hardware Store in the Village of Clyman on prostitution charges. The gentlemen’s club was one of two mentioned in the federal indictment of a Hartford man accused of sex trafficking.
Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt was in full uniform while conducting a routine bar check at the establishment at 942 Main Street around 5pm when he allegedly caught an employee in a sex act with a customer. Schmidt says the investigation revealed that there was an agreement made between a 25-year-old Milwaukee woman and the customer to exchange sex for money. She was arrested and booked into the Dodge County Jail on a charge of felony Prostitution. A 64-year-old Columbus man is in jail on a felony charge of Patronizing Prostitutes.
The case remains under active investigation by the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office; the names of the individuals involved are not being released at this time. Charges are being forwarded to the Dodge County District Attorney’s Office. The Hardware Store owner was contacted and was advised that the club would need to close for the remainder of the day.
In a press release, Schmidt reminded the public that prostitution is a crime and violators will be arrested. Schmidt says often times these acts are directly linked to sex trafficking facilitated by a third party who uses violence, coercion and threats to force women into acts of prostitution for their profit. He urges those with information on prostitution or sex trafficking to come forward with that information – including women who may be caught up in the lifestyle — so that authorities can assist them in getting out safely.
The sheriff is working directly with Village of Clyman officials, providing the facts in the case for action “as the board determines.” Last month, the village board adopted a demerit point ordinance that would allow officials to suspend or revoke the liquor license of any establishment that fails to follow the law. Prostitution is among the offenses listed and the points that could be assessed are high enough to trigger a hearing.
In April, we reported that Christopher Childs was charged in federal court with Sex Trafficking Involving Force, Fraud and Coercion. Prosecutors identified four specific victims in a criminal complaint they say were forced by Childs to dance at strip clubs against their will and perform sexual acts for money that he kept. The 45-year-old reportedly controlled the victims phone usage, told them what they could eat, took all of the money the victims made and would violently beat them if they failed to comply. The complaint states that the prostitution occurred, among other places, inside the TNT Gentlemen’s Club in Lebanon and the Hardware Store in Clyman.