Police reveal inside story on prostitution bust

By: Chris Baylor, Aaron Dimick Email
By: Chris Baylor, Aaron Dimick Email

NEW INFORMATION:

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) The police supervisor of an Eau Claire prostitution bust shares with WEAU 13 News the inside story behind the sting which netted three local women.

The women, who have been charged with prostitution, were caught in the act by undercover officers at the Plaza Hotel in Eau Claire on June 27.

After several months of investigating, the Eau Claire Police Department said they worked with the Plaza Hotel to bust the three women.

“We would have phone calls to the phone numbers that were provided from the advertisements and the arrangements were made for the ladies to meet with us at the hotel,” said Sergeant Ryan Dahlgren of the Eau Claire Police Dept.

But when the ladies got to the Plaza Hotel in Eau Claire, they were in or a big surprise.

“We have video surveillance in the room. We have audio surveillance in the room and we have in this case, our officers in an adjoining room,” Sgt. Dahlgren said.

The supervisor of the bust said arrests were made shortly after the women made contact in a hotel room with an undercover officer.

“The arrest was affected once we had gathered the evidence that a sexual act was going to be exchanged for money,” Sgt. Dahlgren said.

Two of the women have been identified as Kaela Buchli of Eau Claire and Jayna Wright of Altoona.

Officers said both women are charged with prostitution and are accused of advertising sexual services on the internet.

Sgt. Dahlgren said he’s thankful for the Plaza’s cooperation.
“The Plaza was very cooperative and elemental in this success. We’re thankful to have partnerships with businesses in the community like the plaza,” Sgt. Dahlgren said.

Jeremiah Reichert, the General Manager of the Plaza Hotel said the hotel has no history of prostitution, and is happy to cooperate with police on stings.

“The police use our building for the size and the location and the privacy. The back rooms help in their investigations or stings,” Reichert said. “You don’t want to think these kinds of things happen in the community you live in, but they do unfortunately. As much as we’d like to be part of the solution. Any hotel would have said ‘yes’.”

WEAU 13 News has tried to contact Buchli and Wright to get their side of the story but has yet to hear back from the women.

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The Eau Claire Police Department says it's going undercover, and cracking down on prostitution. Officers arrested two different women for prostitution during a sting late last month.

According to court documents 27-year-old Kaela J. Buchli was arrested on Monday, June 27th after she met with an undercover officer who was posing as a customer. The same day police arrested 26-year-old Jayna E. Wright during the sting. Both women were selling sexually suggestive services on the internet and it's something police say is a growing problem.

The Eau Claire Police Department says officers are trying to be proactive to help stop prostitution in the city. The department says it's dealt with prostitution before but it says during the last year investigators have seen a rise in the number of cases, especially with people using the internet to sell sex.

You don't hear about the Eau Claire Police Department's Special Operations Section very often but during an internet sting operation, those officers busted two women for prostitution.

"During the last year we started noticing some obvious advertising on the internet such as craigslist and backpage and it was advertised as local prostitution and we started getting complaints from the community,” says Detective Lt. Jerry Staniszewski, with the Eau Claire Police Department.

Jayna Wright is accused of meeting with an undercover officer at the Plaza Hotel in Eau Claire back in June. According to court documents, she told the officer she was charging $150 for a half an hour and $225 for a full hour of sexual favors.

“Eau Claire is not a community that's known for prostitution occurring so we wanted to address the issue early on so Eau Claire did not become a community known for prostitution. We have a very high quality of life in Eau Claire and we want to maintain that," says Staniszewski.

A second woman, Kaela Buchli, was also arrested at the Plaza during a separate sting, and told the officer she's been doing this a long time. Detective Staniszewski says along with being illegal, prostitution brings a lot of health and social issues to the area.

"We're trying to deal with that community problem and the issues surrounding prostitution itself and so if we can get to the root of why this is happening and we can prevent it from happening in the first place," says Staniszewski.

We tired to contact Buchli and Wright to get their side of the story, but we were unsuccessful.


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