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No Holiday Season for Women in High Risk Lifestyles

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Chicago, IL

A year after prostitutes Tania Nicol, Gemma Adams, Anneli Alderton, Annette Nicholls and Paula Clennell were found murdered within ten days of each other, there is a little less fear in Ipswich, England.

Only six women are still working the streets, down from 40, thanks to the drug rehabilitation and financial services offered by the charity the Iceni Project.

Over 100 johns-kerb-crawlers as UK calls them-have been arrested through license plate recognition cameras.

And a suspect, Steve Wright, 49, of London Road, Ipswich, is in custody and goes on trial in January.

Hopefully he is the only murderer.


In Chicago, after arresting Gregory Clepper for the wave of grisly sex worker slayings in the 1990's-he allegedly confessed to strangling 40 women-police had to arrest Geoffrey Griffin for seven more murders of women in high risk lifestyles, Hubert Geralds for six and Andre Crawford for 11. And no one feels safe even yet.

Atlantic City, New Jersey is not as lucky as Ipswich. Key suspect Terry Oleson, 35, was not charged with the murders of Kim Raffo, Barbara Breidor, Molly Jean Dilts and Tracy Ann Roberts, who were found murdered a year ago behind the $27-a-night Golden Key Motel where he was staying, on Black Horse Pike road.

And women continue to work the area.

Like Shorty, a sex worker from Philadelphia, PA who told the Associated Press she stills works Pacific Avenue but not Black Horse Pike.

"I try to stay in control," she says. "I tell them where I'll go with them. Lose control, and you're done."

Caution was also the watchword for China whose cousin Kizzy Macon,17, was one of the women Gregory Clepper was charged with murdering in Chicago.

"She thought it was a game. I kept telling her to slow down. It ain't no game. But Kizzy would get high with anybody," China told the Chicago Tribune in 1996 while admitting she also got high and was intimate with Clepper and was still on the streets taking sexual risks after he was convicted. "I didn't know he would kill her," China said.

But others say, you only feel safe-that street prostitution is a daily subpoena to death.

You get in a car to get high say drug using women who've survived and when you emerge not robbed, cheated, raped, knifed, shot, beaten up, strangled, abducted or arrested but paid-that's an even bigger high.

And you do it again.

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Martha Rosenberg is an award-winning investigative pubic health reporter who covers the food, drug and gun industries. Her first book, Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health, is distributed by Random (more...)
 
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