A recent internet prostitution sting resulted in the arrests of five women -- one of whom brought along a 15-year-old girl to engage in prostitution acts, police said.
The Broome County Special Investigations Unit Task Force has seen an increase in the number of females soliciting customers through the website backpage.com, police said.
Members of the task force, using a local motel, contacted females advertising illegal activities on the site and set up meetings between them and undercover officers.
As a result, Jessica A. Bennett, 18, Mary C. Hayhurst, 35, Charise M. Shaw, 29, all of Binghamton; Deanna A. Olmstead, 21, of Windsor and an unnamed 31-year-old woman were all charged with misdemeanor prostitution.
Bennett was also charged with endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor, because she brought a 15-year-old who was also engaging in prostitution activities at Bennett's direction, police said. The 15-year-old was released to her parents and will be petitioned into family court, police said.
Detective Sgt. Frederick J. Akshar II said the involvement of the young teen was particularly troubling.
"We're taking it extremely seriously," he said. "Younger girls on the street committing acts of prostitution is, in general terms, unheard of."
All parties were issued appearance tickets returnable to Dickinson Town Court at a later date.
The Broome County Special Investigations Unit Task Force is made up of members of the Broome County Sheriff's Office, the City of Binghamton Police Department and the Village of Johnson City Police Department.