Tx DOT Official among eight facing prostitution-related charges

Eight arrested for solicitation of prostitution
Eight arrested for solicitation of prostitution(none)
Published: Oct. 19, 2022 at 4:01 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 19, 2022 at 9:18 PM CDT
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MIDLAND, Texas (KOSA) - According to the Department of Public Safety, a Human Trafficking and Online Solicitation Operation was conducted by the DPS Criminal Investigations Division and Midland County Sherriff’s Office which led to the arrest of eight individuals.

The operation was supported by DPS Highway Patrol and Intelligence and Counter Terrorism Divisions.

The goal of the operation was to target individuals soliciting prostitutes, as well as to identify and apprehend individuals suspected to be involved in human trafficking by using various websites to solicit sexual acts.

The eight arrested were taken to Midland County Jail for soliciting prostitution.

Among the arrested was Gene P Powell Jr, the Public Information Officer with the Texas Department of Transportation in Odessa. According to Ector County jail records, this is not the first time Powell has been arrested, in 2004 he was arrested and charged with prostitution.

The others arrested are Austin Barnes, Ronnie Dixon, Christopher Holmes, Felipe Lemus, Wilbert Ruiz, Albert Solis, and Trey Luckey.

CBS7 will update this story as we know more.