Men swept up in local prostitution stings sent to school
Recent online prostitution stings and massage parlor busts in McLennan County have landed a large number of men in jail, for a short stay, but to funnel all of them through the court system would cause a backlog.
So many of the men charged with the misdemeanor offense are sentenced to probation and ordered to go to “Stop the Demand” school to learn about the real costs of human trafficking and prostitution.
"It's affecting culture, it's affecting economics it's just a major significant thing in our community and part of this course is to change that," says Brett Mills, director of Jesus Said Love, which puts on the classes.
Fifteen men were in class Tuesday in Waco.
The location and the identity of the men are confidential, but Mills talks freely about the purpose of the school.
"We talk about everything from human trafficking to the commercial sex industry,” he said.
“The McLennan County Health Department comes in and talks about STDs.”
"The goal is to intersect you where you’re at in order to get you to think more properly about women and about sex."
Sex trafficking, he says, simply has to stop.
"So we did away with slavery a long time ago so why are we still doing it today? Are we still purchasing people?” he said.
According to comments some of the men have posted, the class has an impact.
"I didn't realize what i had to lose,” one wrote.
"I love my kids but made a bad decision,” another posted.
"I wouldn't be OK if my daughter came home with a guy like me,” a third wrote.
The intense eight-hour course is aimed at giving the men a new perspective.
"So I do think the men who leave this class have had their eyes opened for the most part,” Mills said.
“Some will do it again but the majority are going to go home and think twice about it."