San Diego Police Chief Dave Nisleit and other California law enforcement officials are requesting the repeal of a new state law blamed for the escalation of brazen prostitution throughout the Golden State.
Along with the alarming street activity, Nisleit is deeply concerned for the plight of human trafficking victims, particularly young girls, and the difficulty of rescuing them due to the new law.
The law, which was authorized last month, permits people to loiter with the intent of engaging in prostitution, including sex buyers, sex workers and traffickers.
San Diego recently marked a highly successful month-long investigation into human trafficking and prostitution, arresting 48 people and recognizing 41 suspected victims of trafficking and sexual exploitation, some just adolescent girls. It was proof enough for Nisleit that the law should be rescinded, and he is formulating an official appeal.
The legislation had been composed by Democratic State Senator Scott Wiener with the purpose of shielding transgender women from police profilng. Wiener asserted the earlier law allowed officers to detain a person based on their appearance such as wearing tight clothing, lipstick and stilettos.
At the Tuesday press conference, San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan concurred with Nisleit’s requests to repeal the law. She stated traffickers and buyers have boasted on social media that human beings can be bought and sold as sex on the streets due to the depenalization of the law.
Stephan detailed the stories of victims they had recently freed, such as a 17-year-old girl and her pregnant 21-year-old sister, along with two 16-year-old runaway girls from Arizona who experienced physical harm and sexual abuse.
The Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking (CAST) defended the bill, arguing that reducing the criminalization of survivors would help suppress human trafficking.
Despite this, Nisleit emphasized it disables his officers from having contact with potential victims to liberate them from sex trafficking. He shared his compassion for the victims who had their lives destroyed along with his determination to protect and restore them.
The San Diego police chief and other law enforcement personnel are demanding the repeal of a law allowing people to loiter for the purpose of prostitution. They point to the recent anti-trafficking initiative that revealed 41 victims of sexual exploitation with some being young girls.
The law was msgided from the beginnning, but police said it handcuffs them from making contact with vulnerable people in need of rescue.