DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Dallas Police Department raid on massage parlors in Northwest Dallas Wednesday, added to the frustration of business owners who say their problem with street prostitution is being ignored.
A fence with barbed wire in the 10800 block of Harry Hines is one business owner’s response to the prostitutes who he says use his property to turn tricks and as a bathroom.
Mike Cohen, the owner of Wherehouse Fabrics since 1996, said he wonders why Dallas Police are raiding massage parlors when the crime is rampant out on the streets.
Cohen says the prostitution originating from a motel next door has fluctuated up and down for years, but says now it is worse than ever and not just at night.
He says he can’t even drive out of his business in the evening because of the prostitution traffic and the customers looping around the block.
Cohen heard about the Dallas Police vice raid on spas on Emerald Lane that resulted in four arrests.
“That was a different area,” said Cohen. “We are experiencing it on a daily basis. Let anybody that wants to come by. At 6:00 in the morning they are out here hailing cars down.”
A year ago, Cohen built a razor wire fence he thought would help.
“They were using the place for their activities and they were also using the place as a bathroom, an outdoor toilet.”
But he says police ignore his repeated complaints to address his neighborhood.
“When I call the police department here, number one they evidently don’t understand the word callback and whatever complaints I’ve had, they’ve kind of laughed at me.”
The Dallas Police Department sent CBS 11 the following response to a request for comment:
“The Dallas Police Department is active in its pursuit of addressing prostitution. In addition to yesterday’s bust, there have been several others recently, including:
•December 21, 2018, 9 prostitution arrests.
•January 24, 2019, 7 “Johns” were arrested for prostitution.
•February 13, 2018, 6 prostitution arrests.
All of the operations and arrests were in the Walnut Hill / Harry Hines area.
The department has also formed a business crime watch in the area in which you refer to address business owner concerns and to collect information with respect to street level prostitution.
While the Vice and Narcotics operation successfully carried out yesterday will not eliminate the problem of street level prostitution, the Dallas Police Department remains dedicated to reducing prostitution, illegal gambling and illicit massage businesses along with other vice related issues about which our residents are concerned.”
Some business owners in the same are threatening to take photos of men soliciting prostitutes to try and shame them, if they don’t see more police enforcement.