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KPD arrest three for soliciting prostitution

James Hahn (left), Charles Johnson (center) and Shawn Paitz (right) were arrested for...
James Hahn (left), Charles Johnson (center) and Shawn Paitz (right) were arrested for solicitation of prostitution following a sting operation Thursday night.(KSNB)
Published: Aug. 27, 2021 at 3:12 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 27, 2021 at 5:35 PM CDT
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KEARNEY, Neb. (KSNB) - Three people were arrested Thursday in Kearney for solicitation of prostitution during a multi-state human trafficking operation.

Authorities arrested 68-year-old Charles Johnson, of Holdrege; 55-year-old James Hahn, of Hastings; and 49-year-old Shawn Paitz, of Pleasanton. They were booked into the Buffalo County Jail for misdemeanor solicitation of prostitution charge.

Hahn was also arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance.

On Thursday, August 26, investigators with the Kearney Police Department, Buffalo County Sheriff’s Office, and Nebraska State Patrol conducted an undercover human trafficking operation to target and identify individuals soliciting prostitution in the Kearney area.

This was a Multi-State Human trafficking operation led by the Missouri Attorney General’s Office and the Missouri Highway Patrol, where agencies form 12 states participated in “Operation United Front.”

Across the 12-state area, the operation led to 102 arrests and the rescue of 47 victims and sex workers including 2 minor victims.

“This operation once again shows the effective work law enforcement can do when we collaborate toward the same goal. We know human trafficking may cross multiple jurisdictions and states, by working together on operations like this we can fight human trafficking more effectively,” said Kearney Police Chief Bryan D. Waugh.

Prosecutors formally charged Hahn in Buffalo County with misdemeanor solicitation of prostitution and with felony possession of meth. Court records indicate that he was arrested in a Kearney hotel room after he asked for and paid for sex in front of an undercover officer. He was also found with methamphetamine and two pipes used to smoke meth.

Johnson is charged in Buffalo County with misdemeanor soliciting prostitution. Court records in his case indicated he was also arrested in a Kearney hotel room after asking for and paying for sex in front of an undercover officer. The records also indicate that Johnson made reference to specific sex acts during an exchange of text messages.

As of late Friday, there was no record of charges filed against Paitz in a statewide court database.

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