A Harker Heights woman was jailed Dec 17 after Killeen police said illegal drugs were found in her possession during a prostitution sting.

Erica Kelly Fairbairn, 32, was arrested by Killeen police at Motel 6 located at 800 E. Central Texas Expressway after methamphetamine was found in her purse, police said.

According to a police report, a Killeen Police department detective participated in a prostitution sting, during which he encountered Fairbairn.

According to the arrest affidavit, Fairbairn was arrested on a charge of prostitution after she agreed to perform an act of oral sex in exchange for $60.

After waiving her rights, police said Fairbairn told police she had methamphetamines in her purse. According to police, a detective found a small plastic bag containing a white crystaline substance in Fairbairn’s purse that subsequently tested positive for methamphetamines.

On Dec 19, Fairbairn was booked into the Bell County Jail on a felony charge of possession of a controlled substance less than 1 gram and a charge of prostitution, which is a class B misdemeanor.

At her arraignment, Justice of the Peace Bill Cooke set Fairbairn’s bond at $23,000.

Under Texas Penal Statute 43.02 (Prostitution), a first offense of prostitution is a class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to 180 days in jail, a fine of $2,000 or both.

Patronizing or paying for sex is a class B misdemeanor under the provisions of TPC chapter 43.02 and carries the same schedule of punishments.

A subsequent second or third conviction for prostitution is a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a $4,000 fine or both.

The felony charge of possession of a controlled substance is considerably more severe. Under the Texas Health and Safety Code, chapter 481, penalties range from a state jail felony for possession under 1 gram to a first degree felony for possession of over 200 grams but under 400 grams.

Although this incident occurred within the jurisdiction of the Killeen Police Department, residents of Harker Heights should not assume this category of crime doesn’t occur here. It does.

Harker Heights police are doubtlessly cognizant that prostitution knows no boundaries and thrives wherever and whenever a demand arises. It is not known as the world’s oldest profession for nothing.

John Vander WERFF is a 30-year veteran of law enforcement, with a decade in city and county law enforcement and 20 years with state police.

John Vander Werff is a 30-year veteran of law enforcement and a Copperas Cove resident.​

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