Prostitution in Denver: Women busted more than men, punished more harshly
While it's impossible to say that all of the males arrested were johns and all of the females were prostitutes, police officers admit that's most often the case. So what's the profile of the men and women being arrested? The average age of males was 42 years old, and 46 percent were Caucasian. An additional 30 percent were African American and 19 percent were Latino. The average age of females was younger -- 34 years old -- and 43 percent were Caucasian, while 15 percent were African American and 39 percent were Latina.
While johns were viewed as regular guys with dogs and kids and jobs, interviews with law enforcement agents and city officials revealed that many view prostitutes as either drug addicts or victims, especially if the prostitutes are under the age of eighteen. One officer said, "Younger girls go for the money; once they are older, its more for the drugs."
However, the data doesn't support that assertion. The study found that only 6 percent of women charged in city court with prostitution were also charged with drug paraphernalia, and only 1.4 percent were charged with drug paraphernalia and possession. Only 13 percent were sentenced to the Chrysalis Project, a program for drug-addicted prostitutes.
One of the biggest surprises came when researchers examined the punishments given to men and women found guilty of prostitution-related charges in Denver City Court. Statistics show that women are far more likely to get jail time: 70 percent of women, as opposed to just 36 percent of men. Instead, men are more likely to be fined; 74 percent of men were fined, as opposed to 19 percent of women. Furthermore, 10 percent of men were sentenced to community service, while only 1.4 percent of women were.
Flip the page to read a theory as to why that might be.