Two arrested in prostitution sting plead guilty, receive one year probation

(ABC 6 News) – Two of the six men arrested in a Rochester prostitution sting pleaded guilty to their charges of engaging in prostitution and received one year of probation each.

Russell Hodge, 46, of Hayfield and David Thorland, 68, of Thompson, Iowa were arrested and accused of engaging in prostitution on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

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The Olmsted County attorney’s office said the sting was part of an attempt to keep Rochester from being seen as a crime destination.

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According to court documents, undercover officers with Rochester police placed and monitored an ad advertising sexual services for individuals willing to meet a young woman at a location of her choice.

According to court documents, both Hodge and Thorland responded to the ad, arranged to pay the undercover officers posing as a sex worker for specific sexual services, and were arrested with cash on hand when they arrived at the specified location.

Alleged patrons of prostitution are charged with a gross misdemeanor, which usually results in probation and a class on the effects of human trafficking on victims, associate county attorney Arianna Whitney said in November.

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The course was listed as a part of the men’s plea deal.

Hodge and Thorland were also ordered to pay $1,590 each in fines and court fees.

The remaining four men arrested in the November sting have upcoming court appearances:

  • Darryl Franklin, 54, of Rochester and Arnaldo Mercado-Perez, 27, of Rochester will appear for omnibus hearings March 2.
  • Thomas Klees, 43, of Rochester will appear for an omnibus hearing March 9.
  • Justin Hitt, 29, of Pine Island will appear for an omnibus hearing March 23.