A Seattle Municipal Court judge has given police and city prosecutors the go-ahead to add the area around the Seattle Center—and remove Capitol Hill—from the city’s list of anti-prostitution zones.
Yesterday, Judge Fred Bonner granted the city’s request to add an additional Stay Out of Prostitution (S.O.A.P.) zones in near the Seattle Center.
The S.O.A.P. zones allow courts to require people charged with prostitution to stay out of high-prostitution areas–primarily around downtown–while they await trial or following their release from jail.
The new zone will include:
The areas bounded by Mercer Street on the North, Fifth Avenue North on the West, Fifth Avenue on the Southwest, Lenora Avenue on the Southeast and Westlake Avenue on the East.
According to police, the area near Mercer, referred to as “The Track,” has become a prime target for gang members looking to recruit young women into prostitution.
Last year, police arrested several gang members involved in pimping young women on The Track during Operation Fast Track.
In addition to adding the new zone near the Seattle Center, the city’s also removing two areas from the S.O.A.P. list
The area bounded by Virginia on the North, Columbia Street on the South, Ninth Avenue on the East and First Avenue on the west; (2) The area bounded by East Pine Street on the North, East Pike Street on the South, Tenth Avenue on the East and Ninth Avenue on the West.
The city’s other S.O.A.P. zones apparently remain unchanged:
Yesler and Jackson to South Weller between 12th Ave S and 5th Ave S.
One block on either side of Aurora Ave between Denny and 145th
One block of either side of E Yesler between 21st Ave S and I-5
South Cloverdale from 14th Ave S to 7th Ave S, between Dallas Ave and S Donovan.
The area bounded on the north by South Charleston Street; on the east by 42nd Avenue South from South
And Charleston Street to South Dawson Street, 46th Avenue South from South Dawson Street to South Graham Street, 51st Avenue South from South Graham Street to South Frontenac Street, and Seward Park Avenue South from South Frontenac Street to South Othello Street; on the south by South Othello Street; on the west by Letitia Avenue South to 35th Avenue South to Renton Avenue South from South Charleston Street to South Orcas Street, and 42nd Avenue South from South Orcas Street to South Othello Street.