Two men arrested as part of a law enforcement prostitution operation conducted in October in Breezy Point are now officially facing charges.
Roger Louis Carriere Jr., 35, Grand Rapids, and Robert Joseph Hennen, 52, Pierz, each face a gross misdemeanor charge of soliciting prostitution in a public place, according to criminal complaints filed by the Crow Wing County Attorney's Office Friday. Both men were arrested by Breezy Point Police after showing up for arranged meetings with a fictional escort in a Breezy Point hotel room through a classified advertising website.
On Tuesday, Oct. 13, both men initiated contact with the phone number provided in the ad placed by police. The advertisement read in part, "Take a break from your stressful lifestyle and enjoy a FUN-FILLED NO-RUSH RELAXING time with ME. I promise you'll love me!!"
Hennen requested an hour of time and offered to pick up "cover," a slang term for condoms, before arriving at the arranged location.
Carriere inquired whether the escort was available for oral sex only and requested it be "bareback," meaning without a condom.
According to the complaints, officers searched both Carriere and Hennen and located cash equivalent to an arranged price and cell phones with phone numbers matching those corresponding with an undercover officer. Hennen also had condoms with him. Carriere admitted to police he used the online classified advertising website with intent of communicating with someone to pay for sex.
The men were arrested in the first operation outside of Baxter in Crow Wing County this year as area law enforcement look to step up enforcement in sex trafficking, part of a state- and nationwide trend. The operations are conducted by a coalition of law enforcement agencies, including the Brainerd and Baxter police departments and the Crow Wing County Sheriff's Office.
Baxter Police Chief Jim Exsted, whose department has led three of five stings, in September said the goals of law enforcement are to reduce demand and educate buyers of paid sex about the impact their solicitation has on perpetuating sex trafficking in the lakes area and throughout the state.