LIMA — The second arrest Friday of the former mayor of Ottawa not only shows a reoccurring problem in his life but highlights an issue that is a growing concern for local law enforcement.
Former Ottawa Mayor Kenneth Maag was arrested Friday when officials said he showed to meet a woman at a home in Lima he thought was a prostitute. As it turns out, he walked right into a sting set up by the Allen County Sheriff’s Office.
Maag was just one of three people arrested last week in prostitution stings. A woman with a history of arrests was caught at a local motel, Allen County Sheriff Sam Crish said.
The woman who Crish arrested Thursday morning posted an ad on an Internet site. Crish called her up to make arrangements, he said.
“She said it would cost $150 for a half-hour and $200 for an hour,” Crish said.
Crish arranged to meet her at a motel and recognized her as a woman he arrested a week before. She will be charged with soliciting, he said.
Using the Internet to arrange prostitution is the latest tool in the trade, replacing the street corner, Crish said.
“There’s a lot of Internet sites and it’s becoming a huge problem in our community at a lot of our local motels,” he said.
Motel and hotel owners do not want it but prostitution is sometime hard to recognize, Crish said.
“It’s a huge problem,” Crish said.
Usually, the prostitute or buyer purchases the room individually as the other person waits outside, Crish said.
Allen County sheriff deputies and officials with the Lima Police Department recognize the problem and are going to be targeting it to stop prostitution, which, according to police officials, often leads to other crimes and problems.