15 women were arrested Thursday during a prostitution sweep in the city, according to Passaic County Sheriff Richard Berdnik.
Sheriff’s officers targeted Market Street from East 22nd Street to East 21st Street and Van Houten Street from East 18th Street to Straight Street from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., the sheriff said.
Nine city residents, two Clifton women, one Springfield resident, one Little Falls woman, and one Westfield resident, and one Paulsboro woman, according to authorities.
Arrested were city residents Maria Connelly, 49; Joanne Emph, 37; Jacklyn Koziel, 35; Jody Devita, 34; Diann Marquez, 50; Angela Salvati, 35; Vanessa Childs, 23; Karyn Eisengart, 45; and Simone Coakieanos, 46.
Emily Westerfield, 23, of Springfield; Suzanne Kochis, 38, of Westfield; Angela Carpenter, 31, of Paulsboro; Anna Dembitsky, 26, of Little Falls; and Melissa Pagan, 34, and Carolyn Fairbairn, 29, both of Clifton.
“The operation was initiated as a result of numerous citizen complaints regarding prostitution,” Berdnik said. Undercover detectives arrested the women for soliciting prostitution, the sheriff said.
Kochis had an outstanding drug warrant out of Atlantic County. Pagan was wanted on a probation violation. Carpenter had a Gloucester County court warrant, and Coakieanos had a warrant out of Passaic County, according to authorities.
“I want to commend all the Officers involved in this operation. This detail was conducted at the request of citizens who live in this area. Throughout the year, the PCSO will conduct operations of this nature,” Berdnik said. “Generally, prostitution leads to other criminal activity, and erodes the fiber of any community and needs to be actively enforced.”