MADISON, Wis. – Attorney General Brad Schimel announced today a criminal intelligence sharing initiative with the Wisconsin State Patrol to conduct training and increase identification and law enforcement collaboration related to suspected human trafficking on Wisconsin roadways.
“We know that many traffickers move victims around to make money in different communities, to avoid detection, or to keep victims from establishing ties that might help them escape victimization,” said Attorney General Schimel. “Our focus on the roadways is another strategy to disrupt traffickers and identify victims sooner. The Wisconsin State Patrol is working with DOJ to incorporate human trafficking awareness and intelligence sharing into their exceptional public safety services – which included over 245,000 traffic stops last year. Traffickers and those who purchase sex should be on alert that law enforcement is working together at all levels to find them, and hold them accountable.”
“The Wisconsin State Patrol works with DOJ and other law enforcement agencies on a variety of initiatives aimed at enforcing laws and protecting citizens,” said State Patrol Superintendent J.D. Lind. “Our officers undergo extensive, ongoing training to help recognize potentially illegal activities. The men and women of the State Patrol stand ready to do all we can to further the fight against human trafficking.”
The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Wisconsin State Patrol intelligence sharing initiative includes public awareness outreach, human trafficking training for new recruits, in-service training for state patrol officers, and special highway interdiction training for officers. The partnership will also develop protocol for case collaboration with special agents in the DOJ Division of Criminal Investigation Human Trafficking Bureau. The Bureau is providing specialized human trafficking interdiction training for state patrol in October.
On Thursday, September 27, DOJ and the Wisconsin State Patrol will join transportation industry partners including the Wisconsin Motor Carriers Association, Badger Bus and Truckers Against Trafficking, to host a meeting about human trafficking with over 100 law enforcement and transportation industry stakeholders. The meeting is the latest in a series of industry outreach projects initiated by Attorney General Schimel to reach members of the workforce in the position to see, recognize and report signs of human trafficking. More information on this meeting will be available on Thursday.
The mission of DOJ’s anti-trafficking initiative is to make Wisconsin inhospitable to human traffickers and to support victim-centered strategies and partnerships throughout the state. Statewide enforcement and investigation of human trafficking is led by the DOJ Division of Criminal Investigation Human Trafficking Bureau, created by Attorney General Schimel in 2017, to identify, target, and prosecute traffickers and provide needed assistance to survivors.
For more information about human trafficking in Wisconsin, go to the Wisconsin Department of Justice human trafficking website: www.BeFreeWisconsin.com