Complaints lead to prostitution crackdown on Zarzamora
San Antonio police targeted customers of prostitutes
Five men, ranging in age from 17 to 70, have been arrested during a sting operation that targeted customers of prostitutes along a stretch of Zarzamora Street.
The crackdown, orchestrated by the San Antonio Police Department’s Vice Unit, was the result of a number of complaints that the department had received from neighbors, according to a police report.
“It's a regular spot. And the reason that I know that is I can see the customers driving down the street,” said one man in the neighborhood who declined to give his name.
Like most people in the area, he did not want to be identified for fear of retaliation.
During the crackdown Thursday afternoon, a female undercover officer posed as a prostitute and walked the streets in the 1600 block of Zarzamora, a police report stated.
Within about 90 minutes, police made the five arrests.
Ruben Aguilar, 17; Frank Garcia, 21; Jeffry Andino-Cruz, 23; Donald Patterson, 52; and Raimund Schmidt, 70, all were arrested on charges of prostitution.
Garcia faces an additional charge of indecent exposure.
Police said the men all drove up in vehicles and offered to pay the undercover officer for sex acts.
The officer would then instruct them to drive down the street, with the belief that she would meet them there, the report stated.
Instead, a uniformed officer would arrive and make the arrests,
The unidentified resident, however, isn’t so sure the crackdown will do much good in the long run.
"(The prostitutes and their customers will) see what transpires and they'll see that the heat is off and then they'll come back,” he said. “So it's a temporary fix."
Police in the past have said that their crackdowns on prostitution will be ongoing.
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