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Women stand at Ponderosa Lane and Plainfield Street in a Houston area known as the Bissonnet Track, which is a notorious hot spot for sex trafficking and prostitution, Thursday, Sept. A pair of stilettos hang from an electrical wire on Plainfield Street. Houston Police run regular undercover vice operations on the Bissonnet Track addressing rampant street prostitution. Houston Police Department Art Acevedo points at where he saw a bruise on one of the sex workers who he spoke to at the Bissonnet area where prostitution and human trafficking is rampant as part of HPD effort to eradicate activity related to buying and selling sex.
The sex worker said the bruise was caused by her pimp. Menefee said suing these newly identified human trafficking victims was not a solution to curbing illegal activities in the neighborhood, and it only compounded the harm for vulnerable people. None of the removed defendants are believed to be traffickers, he said. He believes that in the case of a known hub for human trafficking, the government should prioritize ending these crimes while protecting victims.
The sweeping injunction they envisioned never came to fruition. Only a handful of defendants made progress by presenting evidence the county should drop the charges or by agreeing to steer clear of criminal conduct within the few-block circuit. Women in skimpy clothes still stroll the few block circuit, as evidenced during a Thursday afternoon visit by a Houston Chronicle photographer.
When state Democratic Rep. The ACLU of Texas has argued the proposed injunction is far too broad and would sweep up conduct by the defendants that is not in any way illegal, like standing at a bus stop or making calls on a cellphone. Ryan, a three-term incumbent who pursued an array of nuisance injunctions against illegal gambling parlors and kush vendors, lost in a March primary to the year-old progressive litigator. Menefee went on to defeat Republican John Nation by more than , votes. Ryan said Thursday he thought the injunction was the right move to address a glaring problem for the local management district his office represented by bringing a lot of attention to it.
He said he spoke briefly with Menefee about the policy shift and he supported the new thinking. Menefee said his staff is not done examining the rare court filing that asks for a blocked-off zone for certain conduct. They were nonsuited — meaning his office is no longer suing them — and several defendants from the initial filing were also nonsuited by Ryan. However, these individuals are not yet dismissed from the case, because a neighborhood group, the Sugar Branch Condominium Association, entered into the litigation as an intervenor plaintiff. Gabrielle Banks has covered the injunction since the day it was announced in August and wrote a series on it for the Houston Chronicle called The Track.
Follow her on Twitter and send her tips at gabrielle. Most Popular. Photographed Thursday, Jan. Godofredo A. Police Chief Art Acevedo said the situation has been compounded during the pandemic. Houston's food scene is as lively as ever, with recently-opened restaurants and exciting new concepts on the horizon. Billionaires are in a space race, and Texas has a front-row seat. Elon Musk brings exploding rockets, real estate to South Texas.
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