Since January 2001 the Richmond Police vice unit has made more than 400 arrests citywide of prostitutes and their solicitors, says a police spokesperson. And while the number is high, many of the arrests are for repeat offenders, she says.
Still, this news and evidence of it has been an unwelcome surprise for employees with Veterans Cab. Ever since the company moved its headquarters three months ago from Atmore Road to 4520 Jefferson Davis Highway, prostitutes hanging around near the business have caused "nothing but problems," says Cami Hatch, an employee with Veterans.
"We've even had some of them out back of our lot smoking crack," Hatch says.
Veterans has installed video cameras in some of its cabs to catch and prevent riders from engaging in any nefarious and illegal acts, she says.
Trammell says that if prostitutes are making $500 a day as they tell her, it won't be easy to stop them. Trammell credits a recent sting in Chesterfield County with pushing some of its prostitutes into the city. Also, Trammell says prostitutes are "only getting slapped on their wrists" when they are arrested.
What's more, she says the "women" comprise a new breed of hooker.
"These girls are younger than I've ever seen. They're real pretty girls. They know where the back streets are, and they carry cell phones now to alert each other when they see the police," Trammell says. "With these girls, when you see a head bobbing up and down, you know they're not exercising." Brandon Walters
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