Journal of Social Sciences

The Geography of Sex Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of Children in Minnesota, 2007-2015

Jose Javier Lopez

DOI : 10.3844/jssp.2017.134.150

Journal of Social Sciences

Volume 13, Issue 3

Pages 134-150

Abstract

This article provides a snapshot of the geographic patterns of sex trafficking and sexual exploitation of minors' court cases and the affected communities in the U.S. state of Minnesota. The regional distributions of cases seen in court dealing with solicitation, inducement and promotion of prostitution, solicitation of children to engage in sexual conduct and use of a minor in a sexual performance are compared here. According to the visual examination of the thematic maps and the spatial statistics analyses, the greatest clustering for any of the offenses potentially related to sexual exploitation and trafficking is for cases that involve solicitation, inducement and promotion of prostitution. These clusters are located in Minnesota's major metropolitan areas and transportation hubs. The maps and the spatial statistics dealing with solicitation of a child to engage in sexual conduct and the use of a minor in a sexual performance are less likely to display clusters of cases in metropolitan areas and transportation hubs. In the majority of cases the patterns are random. Based on news reports and the thematic maps' patterns, the Internet has become a centrifugal force that has maintained a considerable number of child solicitation cases happening outside metropolitan areas traditionally linked to other sex crimes such as prostitution.

Copyright

© 2017 Jose Javier Lopez. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.