Sioux City, IA – A sting conducted by Sioux City Police Wednesday and Thursday netted 12 arrests on prostitution charges.
Eleven men were charged with soliciting prostitutes, including a Sioux City pastor and a former administrator for the Sioux City Community School District.
A woman, Sharita Berry, 24, of Milwaukee, was arrested for prostitution, said Sioux City police Lt. Mark Kirkpatrick. According to court documents, she agreed to perform sex acts with an undercover agent for $140.
Those charged with soliciting prostitutes include Steve Crary, 59, former human resources director for the Sioux City school district, and the Rev. Paul Jordan, 31, of Sioux City.
Crary, who served as human resources director for 10 years, was credited with creating a workplace anti-bullying policy. He also served for a time on the board of the Council on Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence, a local nonprofit agency.
Jordan earlier was listed as a pastor on the Facebook page of Biblical Restoration Ministries, a local ministry. His name appeared to have been retracted Friday afternoon. The Journal’s attempts to contact Biblical Restoration Ministries were not immediately successful.
In addition to Jordan and Crary, those arrested Wednesday are: Alexander Newbold, 23, of Seguin, Texas; Hondru Chiasson, 48, of Harrison, Arkansas; Dennis Harvison, 63, of Sergeant Bluff; Juan Martinez, 26, of LaPort, Indiana; Iseies Zavala-Aguilar, 27, of South Sioux City; and James Ebmeier, 63, of Glenwood.
Arrested on Thursday night were: Mark Tonjum, 36, of Sioux City; Kokouvi Tovikou, 45, of Sioux City; Loren Sawyer, 54, of Onawa; and Berry.
The two-day sting was part of routine anti-trafficking measures taken by the department, Kirkpatrick said.
“We do them all the time,” Kirkpatrick said. “There were a larger number of arrests in this particular operation than what we normally see.”
Sioux City police conducted another large prostitution sting in February, when 15 people were arrested on prostitution charges.