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17 men, including one from Dover, arrested in prostitution sting

| December 19, 2022

JACKSON TOWNSHIP (WJER) (December 19, 2022) – A 53-year-old Dover man was among 17 arrested in Stark County last week. They are all charged with engaging in prostitution after police say they answered an online ad offering explicit sexual services in exchange for payment.

Jackson Township police described the arrests as the result of a one-day operation on Dec. 8 that was part of a human trafficking investigation.

The operation took place on a Thursday afternoon at the Microtel Inn and Suites off 77 in North Canton and involved an undercover officer.

Shannon Majesky with the Collaborative to End Human Trafficking in Cleveland applauded the operation, saying it’s crucial to go after enablers. She says traffickers frequently target vulnerable populations, amounting to modern day slavery.

According to the Jackson Township Police Department, the following individuals were arrested and charged with engaging in prostitution and possession of criminal tools, both first-degree misdemeanors:

Dwayne T. Murray, age 31, Kent, OH

Willie A. Fountain III, age 46, North Jackson, OH

Michael E. Lyon, age 53, Dover, OH

Ger Vang, age 34, Akron, OH

Joseph Sherwood, age 45, Medina, OH

Michael K. Hoover, age 39, Canton, OH

James P. Cooney, age 47, Brunswick, OH

Keith D. Larew, age 50, Salem, OH

Terry Renner, age 64, Massillon, OH

Rajiv Abichandani, age 38, Aurora, OH

Robert L. Kassler, age 50, Massillon, OH

Robert D. Hoover, age 61, Chagrin Falls, OH

Walter L. Martin, age 53, Akron, OH

Robert J. Yoder, age 49, Apple Creek, OH

John M. Kenzie, age 58, Coventry Township, OH

Derek E. Rucker, age 60, Akron, OH.

Shane L. Gammel, 48, Canton, was arrested and charged with engaging in prostitution, possession of criminal tools, possession of drugs, a fifth-degree felony, and aggravated trafficking in drugs, a fourth-degree felony:

Lyons pleaded not guilty this week and was released on his own recognizance. A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for Jan 11.

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