Crimetracker maps prostitution along El Cajon Blvd.
Business owners along El Cajon Boulevard are fed up with prostitutes and johns roaming the neighborhood. The News 8 CrimeFighters tracked recent arrests to find out where the sex trade is operating along the boulevard.
Hookers on El Cajon Boulevard have been a problem for decades in San Diego. Police routinely conduct undercover operations, arresting prostitutes and johns, but they keep coming back.
Prostitution arrests in this area average more than one per day. Used car lot manager Sam Dahman has seen it all. On more than one occasion, he's found used condoms inside a boat for sale on his lot.
"I mean, they never stop. It's always there," he said.
The News 8 CrimeFighters found condom wrappers in the streets and a woman near Sam's lot walking back and forth, waiting for something. When she saw our camera, she made a quick exit. But less than an hour later, she was back.
Sam says that's typical.
"You can tell the way they wear, the way the walk, I definitely know who they are," Dahman said.
The News 8 CrimeFighters ran the numbers for prostitution arrests over the past three months in North Park and Normal Heights within a one-mile radius of the intersection of El Cajon Boulevard and Interstate 805.
Our Crimetracker map shows 107 arrests for prostitution, all within the past 90 days. Close to 20 of those arrests were clustered near Idaho Street and El Cajon Boulevard.
San Diego police say most of their enforcement is complaint-driven. The Department works with several nonprofit groups with a goal of cleaning up the sex trade along the boulevard.
"It's kind of a bad reputation around here, and some people don't like to come to this area because they see a lot of that stuff going on," Dahman said.