Support Victims of Violence in the Sex Trade: SWOP-Chicago response to an incident in which a man attempted to strangle a woman he had solicited sexual acts from after she refused to engage in intercourse

Kim Brandmire, 58, of Elgin, appeared in court last Wednesday on a felony charge of aggravated battery and misdemeanor charges of solicitation of a sexual act and battery. Brandmire got a room with a female Elgin resident on Thursday, May 3. He then paid her to have sex with him more than 30 times before Sunday. When she refused to engage in another sex act, he choked her, according to police reports. The woman was also arrested and given a misdemeanor charge for prostitution.

SWOP strongly opposes the decision to file criminal charges against a woman who contacted law enforcement when her life was in danger. SWOP emphasizes that this decision could greatly effect whether or not sex workers reach out for protection when in danger. SWOP also expresses disappointment at the silence of activists against sexual assault and exploitation and for women’s rights in light of this case. Finally, SWOP hopes this case will highlight the dangerous situation criminalization of prostitution puts individuals in the sex trade in and lead to new legislation which grants individual sex workers amnesty from prosecution when they contact law enforcement in states of duress.

Click here to download our complete statement on the incident. If you have questions or comments on the press release, would like to contact SWOP for commentary on the incident, or would like to get involved, please contact Kris Morgan at info@swop-chicago.org

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