By: Vito Petraglia
Over the weekend, the open air prostitution market was back in business in Brooklyn. The brazen enterprise elicited little response from law enforcement, despite last week’s front page expose by the NY Post slamming the operation.
As per the Post, over the past few months, the four-block industrial stretch of Brooklyn has seen women dressed in what resembles revealing bathing suits, overseen by pimps sitting in nearby fancy cars. The scantily -dressed women have been stopping cars, openly approaching motorists, and sometimes riding off with the strangers. The exact location of the new market is being withheld. While there was a NYPD patrol car stationed nearby, little was done by the cops to hinder the commerce, nor did it seem like there would be any arrests. “Come on, move!” one cop said over his patrol car’s loudspeaker to a woman wearing just a bra and thong. “Keep moving, let’s go!” came another message from an NYPD vehicle encircling the area, where about a dozen gentlemen in vehicles waited for their turn for the pitch of a woman walking from car to car along the block. The cop’s announcement seemed to make no impact.
A few of the cops told the Post, that there would be little point in arresting the women , as they would not be prosecuted by the office of Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, who shifted against prosecuting prostitution cases as of 2019. The NYPD insiders said the department is rather targeting the pimps, in hopes of weaken the industry.
In a statement, an NYPD spokesperson told the post that the department has been working with city prosecutors and outreach groups to offer the women help as an alternative to prosecution. “The Commanding Officer of the 75th Precinct is aware of and working to address the condition. Included in these efforts are the 75th Precinct Neighborhood Coordination Officers working with outreach groups in order to connect women with resources including mental health services, educational services, housing services and employment services,” the statement said. “In collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice and the City’s five district attorneys, we have refocused our investigation efforts to cases involving sex trafficking, indentured servitude, and the exploitation of children. We have worked with the District Attorneys, the courts and non-profit organizations to offer them programs as an alternative to prosecution,” it added.
On Sunday a spokesman for the Brooklyn DA’s office said the office has hardly rejected many prostitution cases this year, and suggested the Post reporter to “direct the question to the NYPD, which, based on your reporting, have stopped making arrests.”