This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

HOUSTON – The Houston Police Department and the Harris County Sheriff’s Office has ranked first and second place in the Annual National Johns Suppression Initiative NJSI.

2017 marked the 13th year of operation for the NJSI instituting a national sting which ran from Jan. 18 to Super Bowl Sunday. The sting lead to the arrest of 178 sex buyers throughout the Harris County Sheriff’s Office operation. The total Harris County Sheriff’s Office arrests equal the state wide totals of Arizona, California, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Nevada and Virginia combined.

“I’m exceedingly proud to lead the nation in targeting sex buyers and traffickers during this annual initiative. Houston was home to Super Bowl LI. As we welcomed the world to our City, we made it clear that there is no place for victimization and sexual exploitation” stated Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez.

According to HPD a number of notable service men were arrested. Retired HPD Sergeant Wayne Jones, Air Pilot William Cassity, HFD Firemen Alprentice Blanks and Yeuy Teang among them. Officers also arrested a man, Efrail Velasquez, whose 4-year-old child was in the car with him when he tried to buy sex from an undercover Officer on the street.