FT. MYERS, Fla — Ft. Myers Police arrested four people in the parking lot of the Save-A-Lot in the three thousand block of South Cleveland Avenue and charged them with prostitution.
Charles Bennett of Sanibel, Altunaga Lozano of LaBelle, Eduardo Medina of Ft. Myers and a homeless man, Dalton Krause were taken into custody Wednesday afternoon.
The report detailing the arrests was heavily redacted, but residents say seeing prostitutes in this area is nothing new.
“They just be looking at you, smiling at you, you can tell that’s how they try to make eyes at you,” said Timothy Higgins of Ft. Myers.
Former police chief Walt Zalisko says engaging with prostitutes will often get the Johns into more trouble than they bargained for.
"Most of them, they are infected with diseases, and number three you might be getting set up for a robbery,” said Zalisko, who now heads a security firm
He worked the vice beat for years in New Jersey and says the internet is providing a new marketplace for prostitution.
“What people do is they search the deep web. The deep web is not illegal, it’s just not as open as the regular web.”
Zalisko says law enforcement doesn’t just patrol the streets looking for prostitutes, they search the worldwide web.He says online prostitution often leads to human trafficking.
“A lot of the advertisements out there, it could be someone posing as a man, and woman will respond to that add, and she will be kidnapped."
The website backpage.com, which was infamous for its online prostitution ads, was seized by the Department of Homeland Security last year.