Springfield Republican: “Woman’s murder in Boston hotel linked to Craigslist advertising of massage services”

The 4/16/09 Springfield Republican reports:

Woman’s murder in Boston hotel linked to Craigslist advertising of massage services

…the killing this week opened a window on a vast and elusive underworld of prostitutes who advertise online and do business at high-end hotels…

Tuesday’s victim, a slight 26-year-old who one witness initially believed was a child, had advertised massage services on Craigslist, the online classified service. A massage table was found in her room at the Marriott Copley.

Police believe the woman was struggling with her attacker when he shot her multiple times in the torso. She apparently was fighting the attacker as he tried to bind her hands with a plastic cord, according to law enforcement officials…

Police said the crime appears linked to the robbery of the Las Vegas woman at the Westin April 10. That woman, who was bound with a plastic cord and gagged, according to a police report, was also robbed of a debit card, $800 in cash, and $250 in American Express gift cards. She had also advertised massage services on Craigslist, police said…

[Police Commissioner Edward F.] Davis said many escorts may not report crimes against them…

See also:

Springfield Republican: “R.I. police see similarity between Boston Craigslist slaying and attempted robbery at Warwick hotel” (4/17/09)
A 26-year-old Las Vegas woman, who also advertised massage services on
the Craigslist Web site, was bound with cord and held at gunpoint at
the Holiday Inn Express at about 11:15 p.m. Thursday, Warwick Police
Chief Stephen McCartney said…

Springfield Republican: “Rape victim left for dead (update)” (12/27/08)
…the bleeding, unconscious form was a savagely beaten and raped woman
in her early 50s, victim of the third such attack in three months in
the city’s South End…

Police said she had suffered severe head trauma and her body temperature had plunged to a life-threatening low of 80 degrees…

The victim is a white female with a long history with police, Delaney said, though he did not detail her arrest record.

“I hate to say it. I don’t want to make her a victim twice,” Delaney said..

“The general public should know that this was a woman who engaged in
risky behavior, not someone who was abducted at random,” he said.

Media Daily: “Craigslist Claims Fewer ‘Erotic Services’ Ads Due To New
Listing Requirements, Defends Against Sheriff’s Lawsuit”

Last week, the Cook County sheriff sued Craigslist for creating a
public nuisance by facilitating prostitution. The lawsuit, which seeks
an injunction and monetary damages, alleges that the county recently
made 156 arrests, at a cost of around $105,000 after monitoring the

Wall Street Journal: “Craigslist Gets Tougher On ‘Erotic Services’ Ads”

New York Times: “As Prostitutes Turn to Craigslist, Law Takes Notice”

Investigates Human Trafficking and Prostitution in the US; Valley Advocate Advertises “Foreign Fantasies” Where “Everything Goes”

A Massage/Escort ad in the 4/9/09 Valley Advocate:

Press Release: Action Network to use RNC and Minnesota State Fair to Bring Attention to Problem of Sex Trafficking

Prostitution looks chic, but truth is ugly (Chicago Tribune, 4/27/08)
A comprehensive 2004 mortality study, funded by the National Institutes
of Health and conducted by the American Journal of Epidemiology, shows
that workplace homicide rates for women working in prostitution are 51
times that of the next most dangerous occupation for women (which is
working in a liquor store). The average age of death of the women
studied was 34.

Prostitution: Factsheet on Human Rights Violations (explicit language)
“About 80% of women in prostitution have been the victim of a rape. It’s hard to talk about this because..the experience of prostitution is just like rape. Prostitutes are raped, on the average, eight to ten times per year. They are the most raped class of women in the history of our planet. ” (Susan Kay Hunter and K.C. Reed, July, 1990 “Taking the side of bought and sold rape,” speech at National Coalition against Sexual Assault, Washington, D.C.)

Other studies report 68% to 70% of women in prostitution being raped (M Silbert, “Compounding factors in the rape of street prostitutes,” in A.W. Burgess, ed., Rape and Sexual Assault II, Garland Publishing, 1988; Melissa Farley and Howard Barkan, “Prostitution, Violence, and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder,” 1998, Women & Health.)

78% of 55 women who sought help from the Council for Prostitution Alternatives in 1991 reported being raped an average of 16 times a year by pimps, and were raped 33 times a year by johns. (Susan Kay Hunter, Council for Prostitution Alternatives Annual Report, 1991, Portland, Oregon)

A Canadian Report on Prostitution and Pornography concluded that girls and women in prostitution have a mortality rate 40 times higher than the national average. (Special Committee on Pornography and Prostitution, 1985, Pornography and Prostitution in Canada 350.)

Many of the health problems of women in prostitution are a direct result of violence. For example, several women had their ribs broken by the police in Istanbul, a woman in San Francisco broke her hips jumping out of a car when a john was attempting to kidnap her. Many women had their teeth knocked out by pimps and johns. (Melissa Farley, unpublished manuscript, 2000)

One woman (in another study) said about her health: “I’ve had three broken arms, nose broken twice, [and] I’m partially deaf in one ear. I have a small
fragment of a bone floating in my head that gives me migraines. I’ve had a fractured skull. My legs ain’t worth shit no more; my toes have been broken. My feet, bottom of my feet, have been burned; they’ve been whopped with a hot iron and clothes hanger–the hair on my pussy had been burned off at one time–I have scars. I’ve been cut with a knife, beat with guns, two by fours. There hasn’t been a place on my body that hasn’t been bruised somehow, some way, some big, some small.” (Giobbe, E. (1992) Juvenile Prostitution: Profile of Recruitment in Ann W. Burgess (ed.) Child Trauma: Issues & Research. Garland Publishing Inc, New York, page 126).

Like combat veterans, women in prostitution suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a psychological reaction to extreme physical and emotional trauma. Symptoms are acute anxiety, depression, insomnia, irritability, flashbacks, emotional numbing, and being in a state of emotional and physical hyperalertness. 67% of those in prostitution from five countries met criteria for a diagnosis of PTSD–a rate similar to that of battered women, rape victims, and state-sponsored torture survivors. (Melissa Farley, Isin Baral, Merab Kiremire, Ufuk Sezgin, “Prostitution in Five Countries: Violence and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder” (1998) Feminism & Psychology 8 (4): 405-426.)

Puncturing Alan Dershowitz’s Delusions about Prostitution
Levitt and Sudhir Venkatesh analyzed arrest records and sexual
transactions in Chicago. Far from earning a thousand dollars an hour,
prostitutes typically receive $25-30 per hour. The risks of getting a
disease are high–condoms are used in only a quarter of tricks. The
average prostitute experiences one violent assault a month.

Prostitution Research & Education: How Prostitution Works
Real sexual relationships are not hard to find. There are plenty of
adults of both sexes who are willing to have sex if someone treats them
well, and asks. But there lies the problem. Some people do not want an
equal, sharing relationship. They do not want to be nice. They do not
want to ask. They like the power involved in buying a human being who
can be made to do almost anything.

Why Do Johns Buy Sex?
Disconcertingly, the men to whom I spoke suggested that lack of any
emotional obligation is one of the most appealing attributes of paying
for sex…

…When a man visits a prostitute, the mere act of
handing over cash for services removes, in his mind, all emotional
obligations to her.

“Money displaces the emotions. It frees you from that bond, that
responsibility,” explains Sam. “The distance you get from exchanging
cash for sex means that afterwards you don’t contemplate the impact on
the prostitute.”

How to Deter Johns from Buying Sex
Far from the common belief that ‘prostitution will always be with us’,
it’s not that hard to deter johns from buying sex. These two articles
present the results of a survey of 110 Scottish men between the ages of
18 and 77 who had paid for sex:

Sex industry in Scotland: Name and shame the punters (Daily Record, Scotland, 4/28/08)

One punter said: “You can buy a lot of things but you can’t buy your
reputation – losing your reputation is the biggest deterrent.”

…Men often used prostitutes in their lunch hour, some using company
cars, and the interviewees said getting their car impounded and their
company finding out would stop them…

A third thought rape was just men getting carried away and 12 per cent
thought that it was not possible to rape a prostitute. A full 10 per
cent claimed the concept of rape simply didn’t apply to these women.

And almost a quarter thought that once they had paid for sex, they had free rein…

[Said one punter,] “You need to know how to manipulate and control
[prostituted women], which is easy with street prostitutes, you just
dangle drink and drugs in front of them.”

Prostitute punters more violent (The Herald, Scotland, 4/28/08)

The report states: “54% of the men who frequently used women in
prostitution had committed sexually aggressive acts against
non-prostitute partners compared to 30% of the less frequent users.

“The more frequently a punter used women in prostitution, the more
likely he was to have committed sexually coercive acts against
non-prostituting women…

…some 89% would stop using prostitutes if “named and shamed” on the sex offenders’ register.

Grand Theft Auto IV: Women Screwed, Run Over, Shot and Burned
The video game Grand Theft Auto IV
presents the “Ladies of Liberty City”. A trailer shows prostituted
women being run over and shot after having sex with a john. These
disturbing videos express the disposability of these women in our