Reporting Maria Medina
SACRAMENTO COUNTY (CBS13) — CBS13 was there when a massage therapist offered sex to an undercover cop, but investigators worry recent arrests may not be enough.
Because of budget cuts, Sacramento County Sheriff’s investigators can’t crack down on prostitution like they used to.
But in the last few months, investigators went after some massage parlors they believed were likely selling sex.
Minutes after an undercover investigator posted as a customer wanting a massage at Lynwah’s Massage Parlor on El Camino Avenue, a woman allegedly agreed to exchange sex for cash.
She and her managed were arrested for operating the business without proper licenses.
There’s no shortage of these businesses around Sacramento County, unfortunately,” said Sgt. Jason Ramos. “They’ve gone without attention from law enforcement for some time.”
A masseuse in Sacramento we spoke to a few months ago says she sees up to eight clients a day and makes up to $1,500 a week, openly advertising her services on the Internet.
Investigators admit there’s a prostitution problem that’s exploded in recent years, because of budget cuts to the sheriff’s department.
And it’s the same story for many other law enforcement agencies.
“We don’t have any personnel who are responsible full-time for working in this capacity.”
But for the past few months, investigators have gone after illegal massage parlor operations, hitting places like Lynwah’s. and it takes just a few arrested to get the word out.
“We think definitely word goes out. I mean some of the owners and managers and employees of these businesses communicate.”
But without full-time investigators dedicated to cracking down on this booming business, the problem will persist in neighborhoods near schools and businesses.
“We wish we had more time to do it on a regular basis. That’s just not a reality.”
And investigators say Sacramento County gets up to 30 requests for massage-related business license renewals and a handful of new applications for these types of businesses.
Investigators arrested the suspect in this case and temporarily suspended its business license. We called the number to the parlor and it’s disconnected.