STROUDSBURG, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Fifteen people face charges after a big prostitution bust in the Poconos. Detectives arrested 12 men and 3 women after an all-day undercover sting Thursday at a Stroudsburg hotel. As you look through these men and women’s booking photos, you may recognize some of them as well-known people in Monroe County.
Fifteen people expected sex for money, until detectives busted in. It started when investigators posted an ad on Backpage.com.
Narcotics Detective Kim Lippincott with the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office says, “the phones were ringing off the hook all day long. We had probably over 100 guys contact us.”
Twelve “johns”, or men paying for sex, showed up to a Stroudsburg hotel. Detectives also replied to three women selling themselves.
“It’s not too often that we do these large scale prostitution stings but we are actively seeking prostitutes or johns,” adds Lippincott.
Andre Hylton is one of the men charged with patronizing a prostitute. He’s an anesthesiologist provider contracted at Pocono Medical Center. Donald Gower was also arrested. He owns Gower Funeral Home & Crematory in Gilbert. Then there’s Randy Cramer. He’s part of The Cramer Brothers Band. The country group is known for playing around the Poconos.
Lippincott says, “we’ve seen priests, we’ve seen doctors, we’ve seen people of all different backgrounds paying for sex. So it’s not surprising at all.”
Lippincott says typically these undercover stings are done at night. Thursday’s was in broad daylight.
“We decided to target a different time and it worked out,” she adds.
Lippincott says prostitution is a huge issue in Monroe County. She has a message for any “john” paying for sex.
“The sex you are engaging in, the sex you are paying for, may not be as consensual as you think it is,” she adds.
Detective Lippincott says the three women arrested for prostitution worked independently. No traffickers were arrested in Thursday’s sting. All 15 people have court appearances scheduled at later dates. The Monroe County District Attorney’s Office says the big bust is part of a larger effort to combat human trafficking and prostitution in the community.
Statement from Pocono Medical Center: Dr. Hylton is not an employee of Pocono Health System/Pocono Medical Center. We have contacted his employer for appropriate review and action to take place.